‘Statements at his expense is downright disrespectful,’ Ravi Shastri lashes out at people talking about MS Dhoni’s retirement
Irked by all the talk of MS Dhoni’s retirement, India head coach Ravi Shastri said that Dhoni has earned the right to retire when he wants to.Updated: Oct 27, 2019, 09:19 IST
MS Dhoni hasn’t played in any form of cricket since India’s exit from the World Cup in England in July 2019. But that hasn’t kept him away from the news. In fact, Dhoni has been hogging the headlines as much as India captain Virat Kohli or vice captain Rohit Sharma. Such has been the speculation about his retirement that newly-elected BCCI president Sourav Ganguly’s one of the first assertions was to have a word with the former India captain to have a better understanding of the situation. Irked by all the talk of Dhoni’s retirement, India head coach Ravi Shastri said that Dhoni has earned the right to retire when he wants to.
“Let me say this: M.S. Dhoni has earned the right to retire when he wants to. And let this debate end once and for all,” Shastri told Times of India.
Shastri also reserved strong words for the critics of Dhoni. “Half the guys commenting on MS Dhoni can’t even tie their shoelaces. Look at what he’s achieved for the country. Why are people in a hurry to see him off? Maybe, they don’t find enough talking points,” Shastri said.
“He and everybody who knows him know he’ll be going away soon. So, let it happen when it has to. Making statements at his expense is downright disrespectful. After 15 years of playing for India, wouldn’t he know what’s the right thing to do? “ asked Shastri.
“When he retired from Test cricket, what did he say? That Wriddhiman Saha was good enough to be handed over the wicket-keeping gloves. He was correct. He’s been a shadow when it comes to the team, always sharing his mind, lending his views.”
Shastri also pointed out that it was brilliant from Dhoni to visit the Indian team at Ranchi and have a word with debutant Shahbaz Nadeem in the dressing room after India’s victory.
“The other day, he came over to the dressing room in Ranchi to meet Shahbaz Nadeem and had a chat — how motivating is that for a guy making his debut at home,” Shastri said.
India’s chairman of selectors MSK Prasad, meanwhile, made it clear that the Indian team management has moved on from Dhoni and they are concentrating on Rishabh Pant as first-choice wicket-keeper.
“I made it very clear, post World Cup that we are moving on. We are giving opportunities to youngsters and see that they establish themselves in the side. With Rishabh Pant doing so well and Sanju Samson coming into the side, I am sure, you must be understanding our thought process,” Prasad said.
Dhoni was named in India’s T20I squad for the Bangladesh tour as the selectors decided to go with Pant as the first-choice keeper and Sanju Samson as the back-up option.