Dhoni wants a "new start"
Delhi, India, CMC-IANS – Mahendra Singh Dhoni said India have put their disastrous performance in England behind them and was looking for a new start, when the first Test of the three against West Indies starts on Sunday.
Dhoni said it was not the ideal time to look back at the English summer, when they were not only dislodged from the No.1 spot in Tests, but also failed to win a single match during the series.
“Injuries played a crucial part in England. There is no good reason why we should look back at the series. It is all about being in the present. We should look ahead and prepare for the future,” Dhoni told reporters on the eve of the match at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium.
Dhoni said the Test series against West Indies marks the start of the process to get back the Number 1 ranking.
“We don’t have to bother too much about the rankings. We just have to do well to get back to the top,” he said. “It is the process to get back to the top spot that we should think about. This series is just the start of the process.”
Dhoni also said there is no lack of motivation to do well against West Indies, who are ranked seventh in Tests.
Asked whether the series is a warm-up for the tougher tour to Australia, Dhoni said: “We are not looking beyond this series. There is still some time left for the Australia tour. Let us get over this series and then we would think about Australia.”
Dhoni also said there could be two to three newcomers in the Indian side for the match. Spinners Ravichandran Ashwin, Rahul Sharma and fast bowler Umesh Yadav could make their debuts.
Contrary to conventional belief, Dhoni said the young bowlers have been exposed to international cricket and backed them to do well against the Caribbean side.
“The bowlers, who will be selected, have already been exposed to international cricket because they have played in One-Day Internationals,” he said.
“I don’t think they will really get excited. A bit of IPL has also helped them. I hope that they will do their job for the team.”
Asked about the Kotla pitch, Dhoni said: “Initially, it won’t turn much, but as the game progresses the spinners will get some assistance from it.”
Dhoni also said that the team was not thinking too much about Sachin Tendulkar’s 100th international hundred.
“It’s a milestone that Sachin will get, if not in this match, then in the next. It is bound to happen,” the captain said of the maestro.
“So rather than discussing too much about the milestone the team has decided that let him achieve it and then we would celebrate it.”