Former Indian captain Bishan Singh Bedi termed India’s wicket-keeper batsman, Mahendra Singh Dhoni as India’s “half captain” and his absence made Virat Kohli “visibly rough” in the middle during India’s fourth ODI loss in Mohali.
“We all are missing him (Dhoni) because he’s almost half-a-captain on the field. His absence was felt yesterday (in Mohali) behind the stumps,” Bedi told ANI on Monday.
“Dhoni is not getting any younger, he is no spring chicken either but the team needs him. He has a calming influence on the side. The captain needs him by his side, he is visibly rough without him. It is not a good sign,” added Bedi.
The wicket-keeper batsman has been rested for the remainder of the series which is tied at 2-2 as Australia snatched victory from the jaws of defeat in the fourth match at Mohali.
Bedi, who took 266 wickets in 67 Tests, further said fiddle with the combination is not required ahead of the World Cup, scheduled to be hosted in England from May 30 to July 14.
“I would personally like them to live in the present. World Cup is still two and a half months away. Just play the game. For the World Cup, we have been experimenting and preparing for the last one year and I am not happy with that at all,” he said.
When asked about Pant, Bedi expressed himself with no holds barred. Bedi said: “Pant is a wild horse. Somebody has to tame him. Who is going to do that? The support staff should be able to do that. He is making the same mistakes again and again and behind stumps, too, he has a lot of work to do, honestly. Your chairman of the selection committee (MSK Prasad) is a wicketkeeper, you talk to him at least.”