MS Dhoni's recent performances with the bat have raised doubts in the minds of many. Though, it is understood, despite being dropped for the T20I series against Australia, the former Indian skipper is most likely to retain his place in the side for the 2019 World Cup.
Captain Cool has failed to emulate his hitting prowess of the past and struggled with the bat at the Asia Cup and the recently-concluded series against West Indies, where he scored a combined total of 127 runs in the seven innings played.
Mahi was given a wake-up call of sorts when the selectors decided to drop him from the squad. Later, skipper Virat Kohli revealed that it was MS Dhoni's decision step away in order to the vacate the position for backup wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant.
However, it is no a hidden fact that his presence behind stumps has proven highly significant to India on many occasion. Not only his match-winning abilities, but his experience seems to be a crucial part to the Men in Blue's success in the shorter format.
Amidst the current saga surrounding his exclusion from the squad, former Indian spearhead Ashish Nehra has thrown his weight behind his former team-mate MS Dhoni. Expressing his views on a discussion with Cricnext, Nehra insisted that the quality of the talismanic wicket-keeper batsman was unmatched and believed he still is a vital member of the Indian squad.
“Anybody can have one or two bad series. MS Dhoni is that kind of a guy in the dressing room – whether he scores 100, 80,0, takes a brilliant catch, misses a catch – it will make news. We should leave MS Dhoni aside. Yes there’s Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik who have done reasonably well but MS Dhoni is MS Dhoni – nobody comes close to him Not only as a cricketer but the kind of aura he has.”
Like Nehra, former Indian batsman Ajay Jadeja voiced similar sentiments. Jadeja believes that the selectors should be held accountable for India losing Dhoni as a T20 player.
Jadeja also expressed that the 2007 World T20 and 2011 World Cup winning captain has a lot more to give, if he is afforded chances. "He needs more cricket, I absolutely believe he needs more cricket because the form of a batsman or a bowler cannot come if you are not playing games," he told Cricbuzz.