Dhoni wary of ‘dangerous’ Sri Lanka
Ahead of their semi-final clash against Sri Lanka, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni termed the team from Emerald Isle as a ‘dangerous’ side and said that his team will not just concentrate on Mahela (Jayawardene) and Kumar (Sangakkara) but the entire opposition squad.
“I think they are a dangerous side. If you see their first seven batsmen, all of them are very dangerous; I think we will concentrate on all of them rather than thinking about the two individuals. But yes, they are someone who have done really well for Sri Lanka, but we need to prepare also for the whole team,” he said.
Both the teams have plenty of experience when it comes to playing against each other. The India captain feels, “It gives a basic idea of what the strengths and weaknesses of each and every individual are as far as the bowlers or the batsmen are concerned. I think it helps both the sides to prepare themselves really well.”
Although the new-look Indian team has performed superbly to beat all their opponents, it has been India’s fielding that has stood out for them on this tour. While talking about the most discussed aspect that has played a vital role in India’s wins in the tournament he said, “Fielding, I feel is very important, especially nowadays. If you have saved those 15 or 20 runs, it can have a big impact on the game.”
“Just that (when) a bunch of players are really good fielders, it actually helps me. You don't have to bring in the guy that's fielding at deep point just because you need a slip fielder. Most of them can field at slips, also.”
Speaking about the transition of the team, Dhoni said, “As far as the transition is concerned, I think the players have taken up the responsibility really well. You may spot a few talents, but our team leaves it up to the individuals to do well. You can tell them about international cricket, how they need to prepare and all the stuff, but at the end of the day when they have the ball in their hand or bat they are the people who have to do well at the individual level.”
Speaking about his bowling attack, Dhoni said, “Ishant (Sharma) is someone who gets a decent amount of bounce, who is tall and can have a big impact, especially in the middle overs once the ball gets slightly old. I think on and off each and every one will have a few games where they'll go for runs. Umesh (Yadav) had a bad game, then Ishant had a bad game. So I think it's important to keep backing the guys and also the fact that they learn a lot out of these games.”
Speaking about coach Duncan Fletcher’s influence on the current squad, the Indian skipper observed, “The small, very little things that he can spot right at the start is something that's very crucial for all the youngsters, and it's a key for us. (....) So I think overall he's done really well with us, and I am just very happy for him that we are going through a phase where we are doing well for him.”