When Dhoni started of as captain in 2007 he was widely acknowledged as a cool and calm captain, unperturbed by difficult situations, and he was. But during IPL 2009 he was seen to loose his cool as his bowlers failed him consistently. This has continued in the Twenty20 World Cup. In the Super 8 match against West Indies, both his batting and captaincy left a lot to be desired.
In that match, he scored 11 runs from 23 balls. Was he thinking that its time to consolidate so he can bat slowly? Surely it was time to consolidate, India had lost 3 quick wickets and some sort of partnership was needed. But in Twenty20 consolidation means scoring at run a ball, or in the worst case scenario scoring at a strike rate of 90. But a strike rate of well below 50 is simply not acceptable, its considered slow even in Test Cricket!
Then his captaincy was shoddy to say the least. Zaheer, India’s best bowler, did not complete his quota of overs. In the recent concluded IPL Ishant had gone for a lot of runs in the death overs, on the other hand Irfan had done well, and in a game against Deccan Chargers he had bowled a superb last over to win the match for Kings XI Punjab, dismissing a well set Rohit on the way. Yet Ishant got the 17th over instead of Irfan.
Then Harbhajan did the untinkable, bowled a maiden to Gayle. Gayle eventually sccumbed to the pressure and got out. The requirement at that time was to build pressure and take wickets. Harbhajan was bowling superbly, yet he was taken of instead Yusuf continued. The batsmen could easily hit Yusuf for 7 an over and that eased the pressure. Another over or two from Harbhajan could have changed the match completly.
Not to forget the missed run out oppurtunity, Dhoni’s wicketkeeping also seems to be falling apart. It maybe be too early to write an obituary for Dhoni the captain, but the strains of being an Indian Cricket Captain are beginning to show. He is already beginning to become a captain fool instead of the desired captain cool. He has not even captained much in Test Cricket, I wonder what a tough tour might do to him.