The Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) chairman of the national cricket selection committee – M.S.K. Prasad – has made a strong statement regarding former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, adding that the wicketkeeper is not subjected to ‘automatic’ entry for the forth coming limited-overs series in Sri Lanka.
“[MS] Dhoni is not an automatic choice,” Prasad said of Dhoni.
In a startling revelation, Prasad was adamant in his approach during the briefing while adding they will see how the experienced campaigner Dhoni would fair against Lankans.
“Let’s see how he [Dhoni] goes,” Prasad added.
In other words, Prasad is urging the gloveman Dhoni to perform, in a bid to stay in the competition till the latter’s body would feel better to feature for India while donning the national colours.
The 42-year-old former Indian cricketer Prasad revealed Dhoni has played a quintessential role for the national side.
Coming to the conclusion, Prasad has compared the Ranchi-born Dhoni with former tennis professional AndreAggasi from America, who has excelled after the age of 30 to claim the coveted titles under his belt.
“[Andre] Agassi’s real career only started after age 30. He won many tittles,” Prasad maintained.
The 36-year-old Dhoni, who has won three major ICC titles for India, has been at the forefront to contribute with his bat as well while proving his mettle as a leader.
On Sunday (August 13), the 15-member squad was announced by the selection committee for the limited overs series which further saw the inclusion of batsman Manish Pandey, as Yuvraj Singh was overlooked.
Interestingly, the limited-overs series will be beginning on August 20 with the first match of the five-match series at Dambulla, as the final ODI will be played in Colombo on September 3.
Moreover, the solitary Twenty20 match will be played on September 6 which would further mark the end of the full-fledged series.
Known for his explosive batting and being a finisher of the game in the limited-overs game, Dhoni is averaging 51.32 in ODIs after featuring in 296 matches. He has smashed 10 hundreds and 64 fifties.
On the hindsight, Dhoni is averaging 35.61 in 77 Twenty20 Internationals, as he has only fifty to his name after amassing 1,211 runs.
Earlier, Prasad has also praised the efforts of all-rounder Hardik Pandya with the bat while playing a significant role at Kandy in the final Test of the three-match series against Islanders.