Dhoni's strategy lacked common sense: Colonel

Dhoni's strategy lacked common sense: Colonel

Former captain Dilip Vengsarkar called for the immediate sacking of coach Duncan Fletcher and other support staff in the wake of India’s humiliating Test series loss to England and came down heavily on captain MS Dhoni for making “glaring mistakes” for which the team paid a heavy price.

Vengsarkar, nicknamed Colonel, said that Dh­oni led the team poorly right through the series with field placings and strategies which defied common sense but there was no one ready to take over the mantle of captaincy.

The 116-Test veteran said that the support staff should be sacked immediately as they have really let down the team very badly. Vengsarkar was also scathing in his criticism of the selection panel headed by Sandeep Patil and said the committee lacked vision and had failed to groom players for different slots.

“The glaring facts are that we do not have anybody to take over from Dhoni as our cupboards are ab­solutely em­pty. We just ha­ven’t groomed players for different slots.”

What reasons do you attribute to this debacle in the five-Test series?

The first and foremost is that of late the BCCI is not giving much importance to Test cricket as it was evident from the fact that there was hardly any preparations for the tour of five Test matches. Besides, the itinerary was poorly drawn as there were no side games in-between the Test matches that did not allow the out-of-form players to get back into form and also those seven reserves sitting on the sidelines to get a much-needed match practice.

Mind you, we have taken a party of 18 players besides almost equal number of so-called support staff. The bowling looked incapable of getting 20 wickets to win the Test matches and the batsmen were hopelessly out of place. They not only lacked technique to combat the moving ball, but they lacked application, commitment and stomach to fight it out.

Were selections faulty in the first place and then in England?

Well, the selectors had the easiest job as they picked the best possible available team of as many as 18 players, for they never bothered to create options. They lack vision, judgment and courage of conviction.

How much would you attribute this defeat to Dhoni’s captaincy and Fletcher’s coaching methods? Should these two be dispensed with after successive defeats in England, Australia, SA, NZ and again now in England ?

Dhoni led the team poorly. His selection policy, strategy, field placing and bowling changes lacked common sense. He made some glaring mistakes match after match for which India paid heavily. Unfortunately for him and India, he had Duncan Fletcher as the coach who, it seems, is devoid of any ideas and has no clue as to how to turn things around. He, it seems, hardly motivated the young team.

In fact the support staff and the think-tank really let down the team very badly. I hope the BCCI sacks them immediately.

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