Dhoni credits youngsters for ODI series win
Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni lauded his young team for putting up a terrific show against a strong England side in the three matches of the ongoing ODI series against England, in the absence of a couple of senior players due to injuries.
India took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the ongoing rubber against the Englishmen with a series-clinching five-wicket victory in the third One-dayer in Mohali on Thursday.
"I am quite happy with the performance of the team when it comes to the ODI format. In England, we made lots of runs, it's just that we never won the toss and had to bowl last. On a couple of occasions, rain and dew factor played spoilsport," he said.
"Here the conditions are in our favour. The bowlers are used to the conditions and bowling really well. So it's a positive sign."
Image: Mahendra Singh Dhoni
'It's important for youngsters to bat up the order'
The Indian skipper said he would keep on promoting young batsmen up the order until they get settled in the team.
"I always felt that it's important for the youngsters to bat up the order. What's important is to groom the youngsters. They should be batting for more than 20 overs. When they become a regular part of the side, then we can experiment with them a bit.
"When it comes to batting at the No 6 and 7 position, it's a completely different task. Don't forget that the youngsters who were being promoted are scoring runs. We were missing couple of players because of injuries so no point in thinking about them. We tried to groom the youngsters," said Dhoni.
Image: Ajinkya Rahane
'With Jadeja and me around, we knew we could achieve the target'
The current series might be billed as 'revenge series' for India after the drubbing they received in the English summer but Dhoni is no mood to term it that way.
"Revenge is a very strong word when it comes to sport. I don't think it should be used in sport. On one side we are speaking about spirit of the game and on the other side we are talking about revenge," Dhoni said.
Asked about tight finish in Thursday's match, Dhoni said one more wicket could have changed the complexion of the game.
"It was a close game. We should have won easily but we lost wickets in the middle. All of a sudden there was pressure on us. If we would have lost one more wicket it could have been a little difficult to achieve the target," he said.
"We knew that with me and Jadeja around we can achieve the target. And the dew factor also made it slightly difficult for the bowlers to reverse the ball and bowl yorkers."
Image: India captain MS Dhoni celebrates with Ravindra Jadeja after winning the 3rd ODI
Photographs: Getty Images
'England are a very talented side'
He also had a word of advice for the visiting England side for the remaining two inconsequential matches.
"It's important to be nice to your opposition team. When you are under pressure you will definitely commit mistakes. England have five specialist bowlers. As far as talent is concerned, they are a very good side but they need to stick together in the next two games," said the Indian skipper.
Dhoni also hinted that with the series already in the pocket, India might test its bench strength in the next two matches.
"We will see exactly what to do. We are not sure as of now. The team management will sit and take a call. But Umesh (Yadav) got injured so he is out and one of the bowlers will get a chance. At the end of the day we have to field the best eleven," he said.
Image: England's Steven Finn lies on the ground after a misfield
Photographs: Getty Images