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Sat Apr 19 06:52:46 SAST 2014

Dhoni: It would be easy to quit captaincy

TEAMtalk Media | 10 December, 2012 13:170 Comments
MS Dhoni looks on during an Indian nets session at Melbourne Cricket Ground on December 23, 2011 in Melbourne, Australia
Image by: Hamish Blair / Getty Images

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has shrugged off suggestions that he should step down as skipper, saying he will not be 'running away' from his duties just because he's going through a rough patch.

India are trailing England 2-1 in the Test series, with one more game to play in Nagpur, and Dhoni's side was comprehensively beaten in the second and third Tests. But Dhoni has chosen to see their recovery as a challenge and says it would be too easy to step down.

The skipper said: "As a leader, this is a challenge that has been thrown up to me. It is always good to lead a side when everybody is doing well. The easiest thing for me to say right now is, 'I quit captaincy' and be a part of the side.

"But that is like running away from responsibility. For me, my responsibility is to get the team together and be prepared for the next Test match."

Dhoni also refused to lay the blame at coach Duncan Fletcher's door, saying the players had the ultimate responsibility to get the runs on the board and the wickets in the bag, saying: "He has been doing what is expected of him.

"He guides the players in the right direction. It is wrong to question the coach. The ODI performance has been really good, in between we have won a Test series. Yes, we have struggled in Australia and England and this is a series we've not done well in.

"We should not really look for excuses and play the blame game. Ultimately, it is the 11 players who turn up on the field.

"The batsmen will have to take up the responsibility. We need to score more runs. It was a very good wicket to bat on. But the top seven batsmen have to score runs which the bowlers can look to defend. Otherwise it is very difficult. If you don't score too many runs, you find yourself under pressure."

He added of the bowling unit: "Overall, the bowlers are doing well. If you are not putting runs on the board, you can't question the bowlers' effort. I felt the spinners have done a good job and more contribution from the fast bowlers would really help the side."

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