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Dhoni shocker: Prefer Raina, Sharma to Sachin, Sehwag
Amol Karhadkar, Hindustan Times
Brisbane, February 20, 2012
First Published: 01:03 IST(20/2/2012)
Last Updated: 10:08 IST(20/2/2012)
MS Dhoni plays a shot during the one-day international cricket match between Australia and India in Brisbane. AP Photo/Tertius Pickard.

Even after the humiliating Test defeats in England and Australia, the India team members always maintained that all was well whenever team unity was questioned.

But skipper MS Dhoni's dig on Sunday at seniors Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir has strengthened the feeling that things aren't so smooth in the squad.

After India's mauling by Australia in the CB Series match, Dhoni said he would prefer a Suresh Raina or Rohit Sharma to the three bigwigs due to their fielding abilities.

Though the World Cup-winning skipper, who will be suspended for Tuesday's game against Sri Lanka due to the team's slow over-rate on Sunday, said the trio was "not bad but slower fielders", his explanation for resting them in turn is less than convincing.

Once Tendulkar made himself available for the tri-series, the team balance was always going to be affected. Dhoni and coach Duncan Fletcher then adopted a rotational policy among the openers to "give more opportunities to Sharma and Raina".

It is learnt the decision hasn't gone down well with them.

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