Former India pace bowler Ajit Agarkar has announced that Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s reign as captain could come to an end if the national team lose their upcoming five-Test series against England.
With Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman having retired and Zaheer Khan having been snubbed, Dhoni will have to bank on his youngsters to do well.
“Dhoni has the added job to score runs as he is one of the few experienced guys in the team,” Agarkar told ESPNcricinfo. “In case he fails to score with the bat, his position as a player becomes a question straightaway.”
However, Agarkar admitted that he does not know if India have anyone qualified enough to replace Dhoni as captain.
“[Losing] 10 straight Test matches away from home is not a record to be proud of,” he said. “They have hung on to Dhoni as long as they can because there is no one else. Virat (Kohli) is the only one who is a certainty in the Test line-up and (Cheteshwar) Pujara has just come in. May be it’s too early for Kohli, but if Dhoni loses this Test series, there will be [some] serious questions.”
But, former England head coach Ashley Giles noted that Dhoni was not to blame for India’s poor overseas Test record.
“Having played against him as a coach, Dhoni leads from the front and tactically good,” Giles said. “Often Test captains are as good as the side around them. Look at Michael Clarke…with Mitchell Johnson’s form, any captain will look like a genius and (Alastair) Cook right now is struggling to win games.”