‘Kohli & Co showed real potential in ODI series’

FPJ BureauUpdated: Thursday, May 30, 2019, 12:04 AM IST
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Johannesburg : The Indian players celebrate after winning the match during the 1st T20I cricket match in Johannesburg, South Africa, Satday, Feb. 18, 2018. AP/PTI(AP2_18_2018_000281B) |

Chennai : Former India wicket-keeper Syed Kirmani has lauded the manner in which the national cricket team has bounced back after losing the Test series in South Africa, saying the Virat Kohli-led side showcased its real potential and talent in the ODI series triumph.

“Before they (the team) could get acclimatised to the conditions in South Africa, they lost the Test series. They however, bounced back well and showed their capabilities in the ODIs and won it,” he told PTI over phone from Bengaluru.

“It was a great comeback by the team to show their real potential and talent and win the one-day series,” he said.

Kirmani also said it was unfair to criticise Mahendra Singh Dhoni on various counts, including his keeping technique, adding he had produced results, which was more important. “It is all about results. Those who are criticising Dhoni about his keeping and batting are not aware that he has produced results everywhere. “That is the trend these days, we don’t want technique, but we want results,” he said.

He also lauded the Jharkhand stumper for the manner in which he had performed, led the side and carried himself over the years. “He has taken the country to the top in all the formats, led from the front. Also, he has been a great ambassador for the country and has all the credentials of a great leader. So why talk about his technique, when he has produced results,” the 68-year old Kirmani said about the former India captain.

The former Karnataka stumper said the concept of specialist wicketkeepers was no longer relevant in modern day cricket, especially in limited overs format.

“Since the inception of ODIs, the emphasis has been on the inclusion of a batsman who can keep wickets, so that another all-rounder can be included in the team. Rahul (Dravid) donned the role of keeper till the 2003 World Cup. This is continuing all over the world now. Specialist keeper is no longer the norm,” he added.

Kirmani, a key member of the squad that won the 1983 World Cup, said there was no dearth of quality wicketkeepers in India and listed Wriddhiman Saha, Dinesh Karthik, Parthiv Patel and Naman Ojha as the ones who are at the forefront now.

“Saha, Karthik, Parthiv, Naman Ojha are there. They are all equally good. Whoever shows consistency and delivers gets the opportunity. They could be rotated depending on that,” he added.

He also said there were others like Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson, who are promising wicket-keepers and good competitors.

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