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Switching from Test to T20 not easy: Dhoni

Last updated on: September 12, 2012 22:45 IST

Switching from Test to T20 not easy: Dhoni

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Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni conceded that switching from Test cricket to Twenty20 format is difficult, but his team has the experience of making the adjustment for the T20 World Cup, which begins on September 18.

India played two Tests and a Twenty20 International against New Zealand before embarking for the T20 World Cup and Dhoni said switching from the longest to the shortest format will not be easy.

"It's quite difficult to switch formats, especially from Test to T20. The way you approach a game is different in all the three formats and you have to adjust. But it is not that you cannot do it; only thing is that your basics will have to be right," he told reporters after arriving in Colombo for the mega event on Wednesday.

"But, as professional cricketers, we have to do that, and players like Virender Sehwag have been playing in three formats and doing well," he added.


Image: Mahendra Singh Dhoni addresses the media on arrival in Colombo for the World T20
Photographs: Reuters

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'We are a team which relies strongly on batting'

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Dhoni, who led India to title in the first edition, in 2007, said part-timers, like comeback man Yuvraj Singh, have a big role to play for India to lift the trophy again.

"We are the World champions in the 50-over format and it is important we do well in the Twenty20 World Cup. We have to be at our best in this format and we don't have time to recover as compared to Test or ODIs," said Dhoni.

"We are a team which relies strongly on batting. But some of the top batsmen play the role of part-timers. In T20 cricket, part-timers are very important. Our part-timers have been doing well, so we have a very good team," he said.


Image: The Indian team celebrates after winning the inaugural WT20 championship in 2007
Photographs: Getty Images

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'Yuvraj is a champion player and a match-winner'

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He refused to answer whether Yuvraj Singh's inclusion in the team after recovering from a rare germ cell cancer was an emotional decision, but said the star batsman is an asset in the side.

"I can't answer that question relating to selection of the team. It's a selection matter. But I am happy that he is in the team, as he is a champion player and a match-winner. He also brings a balance in the team, as in T20 cricket you don't include a fifth bowler," said Dhoni.

"We also don't have a genuine all-rounder, so we have to rely on part-time bowlers who are specialist batsmen.

"Yuvraj is one and we have Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina. They will chip in an over each and that makes a lot easier for us."


Image: Yuvraj Singh arrives at the team's hotel ahead of the World Twenty20
Photographs: Reuters

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'Conditions in Sri Lanka have changed a lot'

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Asked about the conditions in Sri Lanka, Dhoni replied that the pitches in the island country have changed in recent years and his side will have to analyse them.

"I feel the conditions in Sri Lanka have changed a lot in the past years. When we came here in 2005, the wickets were different, and when we came here last time, the wickets were different. The spinners did not get much help from the pitches in the five ODIs and one T20 match we played here in our last tour," he said.

"For example, if a ground is hosting many matches, then it will slow down and the spinners will get help. So we have to see the conditions and plan accordingly."

He also warned his players not to get complacent against Afghanistan, against whom India open their campaign on September 19.

"We respect all our opponents and we cannot be complacent. In international cricket, no side can take the opposition team lightly," he said.


Image: Dhoni is chaired by teammates after India win the 50 overs World Cup in 2011
Photographs: Getty Images

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'It can be difficult for a while to switch on the formats'

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plays two warm-up games before the tournament -- against Sri Lanka on September 15 and against Pakistan on September 17 -- and coach Duncan Fletcher said it would be enough for the preparation for the tournament.

"We played a T20 match in Chennai (against New Zealand on Tuesday) and though we lost it was a good experiment. We now have two warm-up matches and that should be enough for our preparation," he said.

"It's though difficult to switch formats. When you were playing Test cricket you won't think much of a wide ball but you switch to ODI or T20 you will suddenly find that a delivery just off the leg or off stump will be a wide ball. It can be difficult for a while to switch on the formats."  


Image: Mahendra Singh Dhoni with the Twenty20 World Cup trophy in 2007
Photographs: Getty Images

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