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Dhoni gives out his batting order

cricket Updated: Feb 18, 2011 10:14 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Mahendra Singh Dhoni practically announced his World Cup batting combination after the thumping practice match victory against New Zealand. The only doubt now is whether there will be two specialist spinners or one. That, Dhoni said, will depend on the pitch on a given day.

"On current form, Virat Kohli will bat at No. 4 and Gautam Gambhir will be at No. 3," he said. "Whether we will have a 3-1 pace-spin combination or 2-2 will be decided according to conditions."

About the young Kohli, Dhoni said: "He is in good form and the No.4 slot suits him well because he prefers building an innings. As of now, Suresh Raina will have to wait." Raina has been struggling due to poor form. Singh, Dhoni and Yusuf Pathan should be the batsmen in the 11, for the first game against Bangladesh on Saturday. Zaheer Khan, who missed both the warm-up games, and Harbhajan Singh are certainties among bowlers. The battle is on for the two remaining slots and there, Dhoni has a problem of plenty.

Dhoni said if Yuvraj gets back among the runs, he will become a contender for the No. 4 slot again. "If Yuvraj gets one or two fifties, he can bat higher than where he is now. "

It might just be that Raina will get back his slot in the 11 if Yuvraj bats at No. 4, for his ability to accelerate soon after coming into bat.