Hoping to find some solutions

Hoping to find some solutions

Sorting death-over bowling on top of priority list for Indian captain

Hoping to find some solutions

Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted that his team would ha­ve to find answers to some important questions in the series against the West Indi­es, keeping the fast-appro­aching World Cup in mind.

He listed improving death-over bowling, having a solid opening combination and a good spin combination among others during his interaction with media after India’s practice session on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the West Indies cancelled their pre-match presser citing a lengthy team meeting. Excerpts.

On the opening combination:  I personally feel Ajinkya is well suited to do the opener’s job. Rajasthan Royals play on a wicket that is lively and has pace and bounce, and it swings a bit. Yet he has been very consistent with them. I feel he should take the responsibility of being the opener, which means Rohit can shift to the middle-order. Ideally, it’s a place that suits both of them – Ajinkya as an opener, Rohit in the middle-order. Definitely that’s one of our plans.

On picking spinners: We can’t carry too many spinners to Australia. Ravindra Jadeja is there, Akshar Patel is there and he is someone who can contribute with the bat as well. We’re trying Kuldeep in this series, along with Amit Mishra.

It’s a difficult one because it’s just a 15-member squad. We’ll see how they perform, how they soak up the pressure. But at the same time, conditions will be really different in India, compared to Australia. There’s a bit more support off the wicket here. There are not many games before WC, but we’ll see what we can achieve from the ODIs we have before the World Cup.

On the importance of winning the series: It is important, but we need to look at the bigger picture also. The most important thing will be to start well in this series and look to win it, first and foremost. But at the same time, we want to do a few things also. We don’t want to go to Australia and say ‘okay, we should have done this’. The long-term goal, defending the World Cup, is something that is very crucial for us. We’ll try to make the most of resources that we’ve got.

On Kuldeep Yadav being an option: We’ll see how he copes with international cricket. We don’t have much time left, but with him being a wrist spinner, in the CLT20 we saw him getting a bit of purchase. What we are expecting is, even on wickets where there is not much turn for normal spinners, he may still get some purchase. He also has the wrong ’un to confuse the batsmen.