Even as India continue to falter in Test cricket, captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said this phase was a forgone conclusion after the retirement of legends like Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman.
Skipper MS Dhoni during a practice session at Wankhade Stadium in Mumbai. PTI
"Everybody was talking about this phase in Indian cricket when the big players would move on
and the pressure will come on the youngsters and we may go through a rough patch. I think everybody expected this kind of a patch.
"Of course, we have struggled in the last two Tests. If you ask big questions depending on two Test matches...it (a situation) may come in the future too where we may lose two Test matches and people will say, okay all these youngsters should go out and someone else should come in," Dhoni said on the eve of the fourth and final Test here.
India, down 1-2 in the series that was billed initially as the revenge rubber for the 4-0 whitewash suffered in England last year, have to win the final game here to square the series. A draw would fetch the visitors their first series win in this country after 28 years.
Dhoni's future not only as the captain of the team but also as a player is at stake, but he doesn't seemed too bothered.
"When people appreciate me a lot, I don't feel as if I am in seventh heaven. And it's the same when people criticise me. We (Indians) have extreme opinions.
"We praise and then start pulling the same individuals down. I would say it's very important to be in the middle path because that's how you will enjoy the sport," he insisted.
Asked if there was any message from the ex-cricketers like Dravid and Mohinder Amarnath who have been stringent on the team's performance, Dhoni said, "As ex-cricketers we respect their opinions but we have our own problems to solve."