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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Dhoni should give up India T20 and CSK captaincy: Dravid

Dhoni should give up India T20 and CSK captaincy: Dravid

Last updated on: January 10, 2013 19:11 IST

'Dhoni has been in the job a long time now'

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Former India batting great Rahul Dravid believes Mahendra Singh Dhoni is still the best man to lead India in Test cricket, but needs to give up the India T20 and Chennai Super Kings captaincies because "it is making him stale".

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"Dhoni has got to recognise that he can't continue to captain and play all the time, because it is making him stale. The pressure of international cricket is huge -- it lends itself to a lot of fatigue -- and Dhoni has been in the job a long time now. Once the early charm and excitement of captaining a team wear off, you need to pace yourself.

"To start with, Dhoni could easily give up the India T20 and Chennai Super Kings captaincies. He has already achieved whatever there is to achieve in those roles. He needs to take breaks between captaining and keeping and playing," Dravid wrote in his column for ESPNCricinfo.


Image: Rahul Dravid (left) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni
Photographs: Morne de Klerk/Getty Images

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'He has not scored too many Test runs in the last three years'

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The former India captain also pointed out that there is no suitable replacement to take over the leadership role from Dhoni.

He ruled out Gautam Gambhir for his poor form in the last three years, while adding that it is too early to burden Virat Kohli with the extra responsibility.

"At one point we felt Gautam Gambhir could take over the job. In 2008-09, Gautam showed he could definitely play at the international level and in all formats. His captaincy of Kolkata Knight Riders in the last IPL was excellent. Yet, what goes against him today is the fact that he has not scored too many Test runs in the last three years, and he averages under 32," he wrote.


Image: Gautam Gambhir
Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

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'He is a long-term prospect as batsman and captain'

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Dravid said the right time to hand Kohli the captaincy would be at the end of the England tour next year during which he needs to consistently keep scoring in all three formats and justify his elevation.

"Virat Kohli is the only other alternative leader, and he ticks the box of being an automatic selection in all three formats. Yet I believe it's a little early for him. At the moment, he is a growing, developing cricketer. I would love for him to get the job after India has played 15 or so Tests which means the end of the England tour in September 2014.

"If he can keep his form and develop till then, it will be a good time for him to take over. He is a long-term prospect as batsman and captain, but giving him the Test captaincy at this stage might be risky."


Image: Virat Kohli
Photographs: Gareth Copley/Getty Images
Tags: England , India

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'This is a critical phase for Indian cricket'

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Dravid, who retired from cricket last year, also called upon Dhoni to have a serious review of his captaincy, saying he should give up the role if he is lacking the energy and drive for it.

"It is important for Dhoni now, even though he has no serious challengers, to make sure that he has the energy and the drive to still captain. Because if he doesn't, he should call it quits: the lack of energy and drive will show, and that will not go do his legacy or Indian cricket any good," he said.

"This is a critical phase for Indian cricket. If Dhoni wants to lead India, the job is going to demand a lot more energy and involvement from him. He is the man for it at the moment, if he can find that second wind," Dravid added.


Image: Mahendra Singh Dhoni
Photographs: Hamish Blair/Getty Images
Tags: Dravid , India , Dhoni

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