Need more pitches like this: Dhoni

His strategy of laying the spin trap for England might have fallen flat on its nose, but Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni insisted that he would like to see more such pitches like the one at the Wankhede stadium.

“I think this was a very good wicket. In India or in the sub-continent the matches should happen in these kind of wickets because it takes the toss out of the equation – the ball was turning from the first day itself so that both the teams have equal chances,” Dhoni said on Monday.

After the first Test at Ahmedabad, Dhoni had criticised the nature of the pitch, stating: “I don’t even want to see this wicket.” Despite a heavy 10-wicket loss to England here, Dhoni said playing on such pitches would help a team to face the challenges of Test cricket.

“What’s the point in playing on flat pitches, trying to win the toss and bat for three or four days over the Test match. I don’t see a point there. You want to face challenges in Test cricket, and these are the kind of tracks that will push you to that. Definitely all the wickets should be like this.”

However, Dhoni couldn’t hide his disappointment of losing a Test match, and admitted that they didn’t bat well in the second innings. “You feel a bit disappointed. Yes, we didn’t perform to the extent we could have or what reflects on paper when it comes to our batting line-up. Their bowling was very good, Pietersen and Cook batted really well. But apart from that, if you see both the scorecards, they are quite the same. One or two big innings, the rest is a phone number, 98351 something like that.” 

“We will innovate ourselves. We have to start fresh in every game,” he said.
There inevitably was a question about Mahendra Singh Dhoni refusing to call back Jonny Bairstow, and it brought out the lighter yet sharper side of Dhoni. “My only job is to call back everybody or will the umpires also do something? There are replays that show batsman is lbw, why can’t the opposition say, no my batsman is out, you come back and somebody else will go. Umpires get handsome payments, and they are supposed to take some decisions.”

Dhoni also defended his decision to go in with three spinners after stating in the pre-match press conference that his team will comprise two spinners and two seamers.

“If you remember the pre-match conference, I said we will pay two seamers and two spinners. We saw the pitch closer and picked three spinners. It is one-dimensional on paper but we were right. That’s what was needed.”

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