Related News

Home » Sports » Cricket

Dhoni bears brunt of India's World Cup exit

INDIA captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni bore the brunt of fan and media anger after the defending champions were dumped out of the Twenty20 World Cup on Sunday.

India was a favorite to retain the title but a 3-run loss to hosts England consigned the side to a second straight Super 8 defeat.

Security was beefed up around Dhoni's home in the eastern city of Ranchi after scores of fans burnt his effigy, shouted slogans and accused the captain of underestimating England in a must-win situation.

England bowlers pegged the Indians with incisive short-pitched bowling, successfully borrowing the tactic from West Indies in their earlier Super 8 upset of India.

The Indian media singled out Dhoni, hailed as a natural leader since captaining the team to victory at the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa, as the villain. He was blamed for shuffling the order and failing to shake off his own subdued batting form when a captain's innings was badly needed.

His promotion of young allrounder Ravinder Jadeja to No. 4 instead of the explosive Yuvraj Singh was also seen as a tactical disaster after the 20-year-old failed to force the pace and left his teammates with too much to do in the final overs.

"Why did Dhoni throw Jadeja to the lions," asked one TV channel, while another said: "He (Dhoni) could not tonk the ball, got it all wrong with his strategy..., horrible captaining by Dhoni cost us dear."

Former India pacemen Javagal Srinath and Atul Wassan were guarded in their criticism.

"This team has been fantastic in the last couple of years," Srinath said. "The bouncers they used were right on to the batsmen, Indian batsmen had no answer to those."

Wassan added: "He (Dhoni) did make some mistakes, but won't just blame the captain, the entire team management is to blame."

Dhoni has enjoyed a smooth ride as test captain since the 2007 triumph but has come under scrutiny at this tournament after parading the entire team in an attempt to quash media reports of disharmony between him and deputy Virender Sehwag.

Dhoni apologized to fans.

"We are sorry for what happened but we can say we gave our best," Dhoni told a news conference. "I think we have the guys who can handle the pressure, it was a day when nothing really worked for us.

"We lost in the 2007 World Cup and we lost in 50 overs, that was the worst part of my career. This loss is disappointing but still I don't think it comes near to the loss we had in the 50 overs World Cup."

Dhoni rejected suggestions that the prolonged Indian Premier League Twenty20 competition, staged in South Africa this year, had adversely affected his team.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend