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'Fans need to back us strongly'

Dashing batsman MS Dhoni said the Indian team was not receiving the kind of support sportspersons needed when they were going through a bad phase.

india Updated: Mar 29, 2006 16:24 IST

Dashing middle-order batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Wednesday said the Indian team was not receiving the kind of support sportspersons needed especially when they were going through a bad phase.

Dhoni refused to elaborate but hinted at the boorish crowd behaviour in the Test match against England at Mumbai last week.

"We are not getting the support we want from our fans, particularly when things are not going well for us," the swashbuckler from Ranchi said.

"I can understand if we are playing abroad, the support is going to be less for us there. When we are playing in India, we expect good support for us. It helps us if you back us strongly," the 24-year old said.

"I don't want to be specific but you know what happened in Mumbai and here (in the first one-dayer on Tuesday)," he added.

Dhoni got out to a rash shot in India's second innings in Mumbai as the hosts capitulated to a 212-run defeat while the Delhi crowd jeered the batsmen on their dismissals in the first one-dayer on Wednesday.

The Jharkhand player said he would not change his style of batting, though.

"No, I won't. I would say I should have batted like I did in the first innings" when he scored an attacking 64 that helped India recover from 142 for five to post 279, Dhoni told.

Asked if the team's collective failure, and his shot selection on the last day in Mumbai, resulted in his slow batting in the first one-dayer at Kotla, Dhoni replied in the negative.

The team management has also not told him to curb his attacking instinct, he said.

"It was just that Harbhajan was playing well and I had played only 20-30 balls," he said.

"There should not be an impression that if I am a strokemaker I have to play my strokes. If somebody is playing shots, I can go slow.

"Even the ball I got out, I was trying to keep it to the ground. That's why I actually got out."

So, how does one keep playing his shots when the situation demands a bit of caution?

"I cannot exactly put it in words. I cannot say what happens when you are under pressure. It cannot be easily explained."

First Published: Mar 29, 2006 16:18 IST