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Mahendra Singh Dhoni is one of the most decorated wicketkeepers of all time. With 769 international scalps, Dhoni is third on the list of most dismissals affected by a wicketkeeper behind South African Mark Boucher (998) and veteran Australian Adam Gilchrist (905).
But while the stats will make anyone believe that the former India skipper Dhoni works really hard behind the scene, it is not like that. Just a couple of weeks ago, the World Cup-winning skipper had said he rarely practices wicketkeeping in nets.
“I think it’s because of my unorthodox keeping style. Stephen Fleming (CSK coach) always says that he has never seen me keep wickets in net sessions in his nine years of IPL coaching. I think a lot of it needs to be done in the mind,” Dhoni had said during an event.
However, on Tuesday (February 5), just a day before the third One-Day International against South Africa, the 36-year-old, known for his street-smart approach, spent a considerable amount of time at the nets keeping wickets.
According to The Times of India report, Dhoni focused on collecting slower deliveries sent down the leg-side and attempted whip off the bails.
The hosts have failed to counter wrist spinners in the form of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav so far and believed coming down the track to play spin can help their cause.
Chahal and Kuldeep have taken 13 wickets together in the first two games and have looked almost unplayable for the South African batsmen.
Proteas batting coach Dale Benkenstein has already hinted that the hosts would be adopting an aggressive approach and Dhoni is taking no chances.
Meanwhile, with Cape Town facing a water crisis due to a severe drought, the wicket is likely to be on the slower side. As a result, the Indian spinners are likely to cause more difficulties for the South African batsmen who had called as many as five slow bowlers in the nets to prepare themselves.
India is currently leading the series ODI series 2-0.
In-form India will be looking to win the third ODI on Wednesday and go one inch closer to seal a historic series win.
Interestingly, India have never won a bilateral ODI series against South Africa in their own backyard.
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