Asia Cup: Injured Dhoni skips training, but has not been ruled out of opener against Bangladesh

hidden, Feb, 24 2016

Fatullah: Uncertain for Wednesday's Asia Cup opener against Bangladesh, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni skipped the entire training session on Tuesday in Fatullah, even though he accompanied the side to the ground.

Nursing back spasms, Dhoni's availability for the match at Mirpur on Wednesday is not clear with his vice-captain Virat Kohli also refraining from giving a clear response.

While a lot of players don't train on pre-match days, Dhoni normally plays football and does batting practice in the nets. Although, he never does any keeping drills during training sessions, he does gather a few before taking the field on match days.

In a nutshell, Dhoni can't be ruled out till the playing XI is announced before the toss in Mirpur.

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and teammate Virat Kohli attend a training session at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah on 23 February, 2016. AFP

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and teammate Virat Kohli attend a training session at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah on 23 February, 2016. AFP

Dhoni has been suffering from back spasms which resulted in Parthiv Patel being flown in on SOS basis as cover for the Indian captain.

While he did not take part in the training session, Dhoni keenly watched his teammates go through the paces at the Khan Saheb Osman Ali Stadium.

A keen footballer, who would never miss a game, Dhoni stood behind the goalpost at the pavilion end, watching his teammates warm-up.

Later, when the nets started, he watched the Suresh Raina and Rohit Sharma bat. In between, he did give some catching practice to Ajinkya Rahane, who is unlikely to feature in the XI now that Virat Kohli has made a comeback.

Dhoni's replacement Parthiv Patel did arrive by afternoon but was given rest as he has flown in from Mumbai this afternoon. If the pint-sized wicket-keeper batsman from Gujarat gets to play, it will be without a proper net session with the team.

The bigger reason that Dhoni will be keen to get fit is because Parthiv can't bat in all key positions in the shortest format.

The other problem with Parthiv is his inability to hit big sixes during death overs. His best has come against the new ball. He takes advantage of the field restrictions in the first six overs at least sporadically in the IPL.

But given the settled top-order, Parthiv is unlikely to be included in the upper half of the line-up. In fact, he may be sent after the big-hitting Hardik Pandya.

Among other players, Ashish Nehra did his own routine before bowling a few deliveries at the nets. One such sharp bouncer surprised Pandya, who seemed rattled by the steep bounce generated by the 36-year-old Delhiite.

The other notable aspect during the training session was Ravindra Jadeja's big-hitting. Whether it was Harbhajan Singh or the net bowlers, Jadeja was regularly sending the deliveries soaring into the stands.


Published Date: Feb 24, 2016 | Updated Date: Feb 24, 2016

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3395 110
3 England 4097 105
4 Australia 3087 100
5 New Zealand 3114 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 5957 119
2 Australia 5505 117
3 India 4579 114
4 England 5645 113
5 New Zealand 5123 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 1625 125
2 England 1962 123
3 Pakistan 2417 121
4 West Indies 2222 117
5 India 2183 115