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Post-Dhoni Team India's captainship crisis: Will Jadeja be chosen for ICC World Cup?

By Sudhansu R Das 

After Mahinder Singh Dhoni, Team India has failed to find a good captain. Dhoni turned defeats into victories on a number of occasions. He had the ability to turn the match with innovations, superb bowling changes and field placement. An avid reader of batsman’s footwork flaws, Dhoni is like a doctor who could give the right medicines to the opponent batsmen after studying their footwork flaws. He was unpredictable in his move; he is more like a spider who can catch the opponents without being noticed. While batting, Dhoni has “fear to none approach.” 
He takes a few balls to settle down and later unleash a hell on the opponent's bowling attack; he is unstoppable in the slug over and can snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Even in his 40s, Dhoni has shown his incredible ability to chase a near impossible target against Rajasthan Royal in the IPL 2023. The target was 54 runs in 18 balls; it had no impact on Dhoni’s composure. The epic chase had begun. Dhoni scored 32 runs in 17 balls with one four and three sixes; one of the sixers covered 83 meter. Jadeja scored 25 runs in 15 balls; CSK lost the match by three runs only. The defeat looked more glorious than victory.
Dhoni has masterminded the CSK victory in the 2023 ILP. The dangerous looking Shubman Gill was out to tear apart the CSK bowling for a huge total. But he fell into Dhoni’s trap. A gentle short of length off spin ball from the left arm spinner, Jadeja was spinning away from the off and middle stump. Gill was in double mind whether to play defensive or to go for a hit. He was beaten and was stumped by Dhoni in less than 0.3 second. A spectacular stumping by Dhoni! It was a precious wicket for Chennai Super Kings which helped CSK to become the IPL champion. Dhoni’s exemplary behavior on and off the field commands respect even from the opponents’ camp; he reflects decency, decorum and dignity which are akin to Indian culture. Dhoni has set an example of a dynamic captain who is relentless in his effort to win.
Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are different captains; they are simple, straight forward and aggressive players who want to win with their sheer batting power instead of clever moves to turn the disadvantage into advantage. Hardik Pandya is almost similar to Rohit and Virat. His body language reveals his uncontrolled aggression, his grin and gesture tell he is out to dominate; it is also needed in the game. Hardik Pandya is a pinch hitter but he is not an expert strategist and an avid reader of footwork flaws which is very important for a captain. He always wants to use his extra energy to defeat his opponent which clicks sometimes.
A captain is a relentless fighter and should keep his winning spirit alive until the last ball is bowled. In the game of glorious uncertainties the captain can’t afford to harbor negative thoughts of losing the match. The match can turn at any moment for anybody’s favor. Whatever may be the situation, the captain should not lose his ability to think and plan. If a captain loses his ability to think in a tense situation he cannot make clever moves and end up in a messy defeat. A good captain wins half a match alone. 
Similarly, a bad captain can’t win a tough match in spite of having a very good team. Today, the Team Management finds it difficult to identify a potential captain for the ICC World Cup. Ravindra Jadeja has some captain material. He is cool, positive, scheming and he is a relentless fighter. The Team Management can think of giving the captainship to Jadeja in the ICC World Cup and find a young captain after the World Cup on a long term basis.



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