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Dhoni needs to take a break, feels Crowe

Wellington: Former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe feels India’s chances of defending the World Cup could improve if Mahendra Singh Dhoni takes a break from captaincy.

“I would say that if India want to defend the next World Cup, I think MS Dhoni needs a rest somewhere, at some point… Not necessarily from playing, but may be it could be by not captaining the Test side for the period leading into the World Cup… It will refresh him and he can hit the ground running for the World Cup. So there’s a couple of things to ponder there,” Crowe told a cricket website.

Speaking further, Crowe called Dhoni an ‘incredible’ player.

“I think he’s an absolutely gifted player, a marvel at times, given all the formats that he plays, but I do wonder sometimes about how he regards Test cricket. Just a point that I’d like to throw in there.

“Overall, Dhoni is an incredible cricketer, and I think that the main fact is that he probably can’t keep doing every format from here on in.”

India ended the ignominious tour of New Zealand by drawing the second and final Test after hosts skipper Brendon McCullum became the first batsman from the country to hit a triple-century.

Crowe was all praise for McCullum. “McCullum was always a leader… He is fiercely focused and determined and is always aware of his job. He showed that with responsibility he could seek a new wisdom. During his innings, his defence was immaculate, his footwork was aligned and perfect his concentration built one over at a time.”

Interestingly, McCullum bettered Crowe’s 299, the previous highest individual score by a New Zealand player. Crowe got to the mark versus Sri Lanka, in Wellington, in February 1991.

“I never forgave myself for getting out for 299 against Sri Lanka. Not a week would go by when I wouldn’t be reminded of the one run I craved so much.

“It tore at me like a vulture pecking dead flesh. I did not know how to let it go, could never laugh at the absurdity of my anger.

“And now today, with Brendon scoring our nation’s first ever triple-hundred, he has done us all proud. He has inspired the team, which has been in the doldrums for too long. So I just want to tell him ‘Thank you, Brendon. You have capped the most incredible of weekends, the most important of summers’.” (PTI)