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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Cricket

T20 has changed since 2007: M S Dhoni
PTI
Mirpur, March 31, 2014
First Published: 17:14 IST(31/3/2014)
Last Updated: 18:22 IST(31/3/2014)

Things have changed a lot for Mahendra Singh Dhoni since that September evening when he led India to World Twenty20 triumph at Johannesburg in 2007, and the Indian captain feel those changes happening not just within him but also around him.

What changes do you see since that inaugural World T20 victory as a young captain in 2007? "Well, I see a lot more media out here then what it was back then," Dhoni replied with a smile.

"No one took the tournament seriously back then. It was one group going from England to South Africa while another group came from India. T20 was discussed in a joking way. They would mic-up the players (set with microphones).

There was bowl-out then. We practiced a lot of bowl-outs and had fun. We won against Pakistan in a bowl out," Dhoni fondly recollected.

 Talking about the time that had elapsed, Dhoni said he could see a lot of changes happening.

"Now when I look at the mirror, I can see a lot of grey beard!," he said.

"A lot has indeed changed as the game has become much more intense nowadays. The batsmen are trying to play all those innovative shots."

Asked about the pressure of expectations and Dhoni said it's the same whether it's one person who is expecting or a billion people.

"It's like having 100 kgs put over you. That's good enough to weigh you down. After that even if you put a mountain, it will not make a difference," Dhoni said as the media contingent had a good laugh.

Cricket is a game of numbers but the Indian captain really does not like every effort or performance to be judged statistically.

"Judging every performance with statistics is a difficult thing to do," Dhoni said referring to Ravindra Jadeja's performance in the ongoing World Cup.

While the Saurashtra all-rounder has picked up wickets, he has also been hit for runs.

"Look everybody gets hit. It depends on the kind of shots that the batsman is playing. If it's a rash shot that goes for boundary, then the bowler is not doing a bad job. But if you have to judge, whether it is a bad delivery or a good shot.

That's what I try to analyse standing behind the stumps," Dhoni explained.


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