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Kapil ashamed but says time to back India team

India's legendary all-rounder Kapil Dev Friday said he was ashamed with the cricket team's performance Down Under but felt that under-fire captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni deserved to be backed in troubled times.

cricket Updated: Jan 20, 2012 22:44 IST
IANS

India's legendary all-rounder Kapil Dev Friday said he was ashamed with the cricket team's performance Down Under but felt that under-fire captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni deserved to be backed in troubled times.

"As a cricketer, I feel ashamed by the Indian team's performance. They are not playing well and have gone wrong in every aspect of the game. But the team needs our support. Dhoni is our captain and we should back him," said Kapil, who famously led India to its maiden World cup triumph in 1983.

Dhoni, who gave India its second World Cup victory in 2011 after 25 years, has hit a rough patch. The team suffered a 0-4 whitewash in England, where it was also dislodged from its No.1 Test status.

Dhoni's defensive captaincy in the Test series in Australia has been severely criticised. India are also trailing 0-3 in the Border Gavaskar Trophy and are on a seven-away Test losing streak.

The India captain has also performed poorly with the bat scoring just 133 runs at an average of 16.5 in his last eight innings. Dhoni has also hinted that he may retire from the longer version of the game by 2013 keeping in mind the 2015 World Cup.

Kapil said it was time for the fans to back the team.

"Yes, India have played very badly and we are all unhappy, but let's talk about them only after the series," Kapil said.

Kapil said criticisms directed at some of th seniors players were unwarranted as six month back they played key roles in taking India to the No.1 spot in Tests.

"It is unfair to call them names as this is the same team that was world No.1 only about six months back and was doing well. These are the same players who have made us proud so many times in the past. But now if they are not doing well, what can be said," said Kapil.

Kapil also said that it was unfair to blame Twenty20 for India's debacle in Tests.

"The team was playing T20 and one-day cricket even a year or six months back and were still performing well in Tests, so I don't think it is fair to hold the shorter versions of the game responsible for the team's show in Australia," he said.

Kapil said the team just needs to belief in itself and hoped India to do better in the fourth and the final Test in Adelaide.

"In the middle of the series, I don't think there should be any change in the team. They are a good side. I just hope that they can put their heads together and play as a unit. The team just needs to believe in itself and the captain must also believe in his side and look after himself as well as his team. It should try to script a comeback and we must all support the players in their endeavour," he said.

First Published: Jan 20, 2012 22:02 IST