It didn’t happen after England. It didn’t happen even after Australia. But suddenly after India’s exit from the World T20, everybody wanted Dhoni out of his job.
It didn’t quite make sense. The Twenty20 format is a lottery – all the players know that and India’s record in the tournament wasn’t all that bad. In fact, India managed to win 4 out of 5 matches in the tournament.
Veteran cricket writer Ayaz Memon also believes that change is in order but not because Dhoni is doing a bad job.
“I think the workload on him is very heavy. The pressures of captaining India in three different formats are immense and I am talking not just about the physical workload but also the mental aspect,” said Ayaz. “The formats are not very different but the tactical aspects of each format are very different and so the pressures on the captain are different as well.”
“I think he needs to be relieved of one of those formats and I would say the T20. Not Test match cricket; not even ODI cricket.”
So in essence, Dhoni needs to follow the lead of Mahela Jayawardene, the Sri Lankan skipper who gave up T20 captainship after the World T20 final because he wanted the team to look forward.
“That is precisely what Dhoni needs to do and I believe the youngster to take over from him is Virat Kohli. Then the BCCI can build a young team for the next World T20. Either Dhoni takes the decision himself or somebody will have to take it for him. He may still remain part of the team but he is not carrying the burden of captaincy.”
The selectors also need to sit him down and ask him what he really wants for ODIs and Tests.
“They need to tell him ‘Boss, tell us what team you want and then you deliver.’ We don’t want that excuse later that I wanted this team but I didn’t have him and so we lost. All that nonsense has to stop.”
And just as we speak about having different teams and captains for different formats, is it time for India to have different coaches for different formats too?
“The T20 format is something that Duncan Fletcher would not have thought it was possible at all till it eventually happened. It’s very much a young cricketers format and having a much younger coach take over is not a bad idea at all.”
“In fact, it might even be a way to help mentor a new coach for the Indian team as well. And also because I see a lot more T20s being played in the future, even if it is at the expense of ODIs.”
Watch the entire discussion between Sports Editor Ashish Magotra and Ayaz Memon in the video above.