Image courtesy of: Zimbio
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has announced that head coach Duncan Fletcher “will lead us into the World Cup”.
Fletcher has come under heavy criticism following India’s disastrous performance in the recently concluded Test series against England, which they lost 3-1.
“He will lead us into the World Cup,” Dhoni said. “Also he is still the boss. We have Ravi Shastri who will look into everything, but Fletcher is the boss. It’s not as if his powers or his position have been curtailed. I don’t know what you feel from the outside, but operations still remain the same. We have a few other support staff coming into the dressing room, but overall the operation remains the same.
Dhoni also noted that he was pleased to see former skipper Ravi Shastri be named as the director of cricket for the upcoming ODI series, which gets underway today in Bristol. However, he admitted that the decision to give bowling coach Joe Dawes and fielding coach Trevor Penney a break was a bit harsh.
“Ravi is here to oversee the operations from the outside, what he feels and everything else,” he said. “It’s good to have him. He is a very proud (former) Indian cricketer, and at the same time, very positive. He believes a lot in fighting and having the right instincts, going over and giving his hundred percent. It is obviously good to have him. He also speaks the same language and can interact a lot with the players. Same is the case with other support staff so it is good to have them here.
“It’s a bit tough on Trevor (Penney) and Joe (Dawes), especially when fielders drop catches and the fielding coach has to miss the series. But let’s hope for the best. We are welcoming the new guys because that is very important. They will be part of the dressing-room family as of now. We will have to give them some time to adjust to how we operate, and see what kind of input they bring to the table.”
Dhoni is also confident that India will bounce back during the ODI series since they have had success in the past when it comes to limited overs cricket in England. Just last year, India beat England in a thrilling final to win the Champions Trophy.
“There is no need to remind anyone that we are World Champions,” Dhoni said. “England are quite an intelligent side. Not to forget when we last came here, we won the Champions Trophy. We have had the success. It’s just that we have to stand up and take responsibility, back each other up. Those things will in turn take us forward. It will change the tough times we have had to successful times.
“Our preparation has been really good. Whatever days we got we have used them in the best possible way. The psyche also changes with the format. If you see you are under pressure to survive in Test cricket. If you get out playing a shot, there is uproar as to how Test cricket is different and how can you get out playing a shot. That also creates pressure. This format is about expressing yourself and you spend some time on the wicket, and then you have to play big shots.”