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ICC World Cup: MS Dhoni turns to ‘former spinner’ Ravi Shastri for advice

Highlights

  • Dhoni has been facing criticism for his batting approach in this World Cup
  • Dhoni was spotted having a long chat with coach Ravi Shastri about playing spin bowlers
  • Former all-rounder Shastri was an effective left-arm spin bowler during his playing days

LEEDS:

For all talks of his gritty knocks as an opener and his brilliant man-management skills, what many forget is how useful a left-arm spinner current India coach Ravi Shastri was in his playing days. With 151 wickets in Test cricket and 129 wickets in ODIs, Shastri definitely knew a thing or two about spinning a web around opposition batsmen.
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Walking up to Shastri after a longish session at the nets on a day when the Men in Blue opted for an optional training session, Dhoni was understood to be discussing playing spin bowlers as Shastri could be seen turning his wrists to explain the revolutions that a spinner gives to the seam as also the rip which helps in getting them drift in the air.
The chat lasted for close to 20 minutes before Dhoni walked off to check the pitch as Shastri made his way to the dressing room at the Headingley Cricket Ground. Sachin Tendulkar had recently brought up the point of Dhoni struggling in the middle overs — especially when the slower bowlers are on — and had questioned his performance in the game against Afghanistan.
“Dhoni is a senior player and should show positive intent. Afghanistan’s bowling is good but you can’t score only 119 runs in 34 overs. He did not show any positive
intent against Afghanistan. Dhoni has the ability to hit but yesterday his strike rotation was not good. He faced too many dot balls and this hampered a strong finish for India. The intent could have been much better by the middle-order batsmen,” Tendulkar had said. Taking to Twitter, Manjrekar wrote: “Here’s something interesting about Dhoni – 41 off 87 balls v spin this WC. But in the warm up games 69 off 56 balls v spin. That tells me it’s mental too.
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