Have played under worse conditions; no Akhtar in WI: Dhoni on second T20
Dhoni said he has played in worse conditions during his career, citing the example of 2011 tour of England.cricket Updated: Aug 29, 2016 22:30 IST
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and West Indies skipper Carlos Brathwaite differed in their opinion about the quality of the ground at Central Broward Regional Park after the second T20 International was called off due to wet outfield.
After dismissing West Indies for 143, India were 15 for no loss in two overs when a 15-minute thunderstorm left huge puddles on some sections of the field, including the bowler’s run-up at the pavilion end of the ground, forcing the officials to call off the match.
“There were about two or three (areas of concern). Looking from the pavilion, the run-ups on that side and just beside the sponsor’s (painted ad on field) plus probably mid-on and then there was a little patch on the (west) side looking from the pavilion again,” Brathwaite said.
“So in my opinion it was unsafe, and even if the run-ups were good and a guy hits a ball in the outfield in a fast-paced T20 game and he chases behind it and pulls something, that could be the end of a guy’s career.
“So not only will we want to play, we want the facilities and the atmosphere to be as safe for everyone’s career as possible. In my opinion, I don’t think it was and the umpires also made that decision as well.”
However, Dhoni said he has played in worse conditions during his career, citing the example of 2011 tour of England.
“What the umpires told us, there was not adequate equipment over here and the condition of it was quite bad, so because the conditions wouldn’t improve we won’t be able to play a game,” Dhoni said.
“That’s a call that the match officials have to make and as far as I’ve played close to 10 years of international cricket and frankly I’ve played under worse off conditions.
“If I remember in 2011, the whole ODI series that we played in England, it was literally playing under the rain. I feel definitely the conditions ... ultimately the umpires decide so they decide you play, we play. If they say okay it was unfit for play, it was unfit for play.
“It was on this (west) side where me and Bravo were standing but it was far away from all the run-ups of the bowlers. There is no Shoaib Akhtar in their team so I don’t think it was a big concern.”
Talking about the match, Dhoni was pleased with his bowlers’ performance, especially leg-spinner Amit Mishra.
“I felt bowlers executed plan very well. 150 was a good score to achieve. I’m not saying we would have definitely won, but a good batting effort would have seen us through. If you compare the two games, you’d wonder if we were playing on the same wicket.
“We did take a bit of risk with Mishra coming in replacing Binny because we were one batsman short. We realise on a wicket like this, we needed an extra bowler and a leg-spinner can give you wickets. It paid off well. Mishra bowled exceedingly well, he was able to put pressure and he was well supported by Ashwin. It’s fantastic effort by both of them.”
Winning captain Carlos Brathwaite said even as they did not post a bog total, they were confident of winning.
“It (wicket) was a tad slower. Their bowlers bowled well. Kudos to them. Indian bowlers executed their plans really well. We tried our best, but didn’t get the score we wanted. But we always had full confidence in defending our total,” the strapping West Indian said.
“For me as a young leader to know and lead the players is an exciting experience. We want to remain champions and entertain the West Indies crowd.”
Asked about cricket in US, Brathwaite said,”Most definitely we would love to come here back again. Fantastic field, fantastic wicket. We had discussion if we can come here again.”