Cricket World Cup 2015

Dhoni avoids retirement talk

2015-03-26 16:05
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (AFP)

Sydney - India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has refused to give an indication whether he will retire from one-day cricket after his team lost the World Cup semi-final to Australia.

The 33-year-old, asked if he had decided to stay or quit after the defending champions' 95-run defeat at the Sydney Cricket Ground, bounced the question back at the media and asked them to "do research".

"I think you all should do research and whatever you write, the opposite will be the truth," Dhoni said, without elaborating. "I am not that old, so do your research first."

Dhoni made a shock retirement from Test cricket in December after the third Test of the four-match series against Australia, with the decision being announced by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) through a media release.

In the immediate aftermath of Thursday's loss, Dhoni had suggested he would continue to play international cricket at least until the 2016 World Twenty20 tournament which is being played in India.

"I'm 33, I'm still running, still fit. Next year, T20 World Cup, will be time to decide about the 2019 World Cup," Dhoni told a TV interviewer.

However, Dhoni was unsure if coach Duncan Fletcher, whose three-year contract is due to end after the World Cup, will remain or leave the job."

"That is between the BCCI and Duncan," he said. "I don't know what will happen.

"Duncan's technical knowledge of the game is excellent. I really enjoy his company. He took over at a time when senior players had left and he had to groom the juniors. It was a tough job."

Meanwhile, Dhoni praised his team for a good World Cup campaign despite being knocked out of the tournament.

Dhoni's team had bounced back from a winless Test and one-day tour of Australia prior to the World Cup to reach the last four with seven straight victories.

But they found Australia too strong at the SCG as the hosts piled up 328 for seven before bowling out the defending champions for 233 despite a run-a-ball 65 from Dhoni.

"Before the World Cup we faced a lot of problems because of the poor form of the players. It seemed nothing was going our way," Dhoni said.

"But the good thing is that the dressing room atmosphere was very pleasant and that made our comeback easier.

"Of course we are disappointed not to be in the final, but then only one team can win. Australia played better cricket today."

Dhoni said the 300-plus target could have been chased if India had wickets in hand, but the Australian fast bowlers seized the initiative with wickets at regular intervals.

"I think the total was chasable because I expected the wicket to get slightly better for batting in the second half. And our batsmen know how to chase 300.

"But hard work was needed to get those runs. Anyway, once three wickets had fallen, I knew we were not going to get there."

Dhoni said failure to defend the title India won under his captaincy in 2011 was part of the game.

"The Cup did not belong to us," he said. "We took it from someone and someone else will take it from us. If we had played better cricket on this particular day, we would have won."

Dhoni declined to predict the winner of Sunday's final between the two co-hosts Australia and New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

"The shorter format is all about how you play on the day," he said. "The only things New Zealand will need to consider are the bigger outfield and the two-paced pitch at the MCG.

"Both teams have played well and deserve to be in the final. Hopefully I will reach home in time and enjoy the final on TV."

Read more on:    india  |  cwc 2015  |  mahendra singh dhoni  |  cricket

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