The veteran wicketkeeper batsman was not picked in the T20 squads for the clashes against both the West Indies and Australia with Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik selected ahead of him instead.
Speculation over whether Dhoni was dropped or rested has been rife since the announcement was made and according to a report from the Indian Express, it is the former.
“He (Dhoni) is not going to play the six T20Is (against West Indies and Australia) because we are looking at the second keeper’s slot. I think we will retain Rishabh and Dinesh Karthik. So they will be getting a chance to keep and bat. It is not the end of Dhoni in T20Is,” India’s chief selector MSK Prasad said on Friday.
The big news is obviously the absence of MS Dhoni from the T20 squad. The next World T20 isn't till 2020 so this is an acknowledgement that someone else will be behind the stumps there.— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) October 26, 2018
The report, however, states that Dhoni has been dropped from the side since the selectors feel that he will not be able to carry on till the 2020 World Twenty20 in Australia.
The team management would instead like to blood a new wicketkeeper for the tournament with Pant and Karthik set to get an extended run.
“The selectors before selection meeting had informed Dhoni through the team management that time has come to move on and give a chance to a younger player in the shortest format. Everyone knows that Dhoni might not carry on till 2020 T20 World Cup. Selectors felt the Indian board should start looking for Dhoni’s replacement from now on,” a source in the BCCI said to the Indian Express.
Dhoni’s waning form with the bat has been under the scanner of late with his place in the ODI side being questioned too. However, the stalwart is seemingly set to remain India’s first-choice wicketkeeper in the 50-over format until the 2019 World Cup in England.
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