Ever since India were knocked out of the World Cup, there has been widespread speculation around the future of MS Dhoni. Will he retire? Will he be spoken to by the selectors?
The answer might come on July 19, when the five-member selection panel picks India’s squads for the tour of the West Indies in August-September. The month-long Caribbean tour is set to run from August 3 to September 4 and comprise three T20Is, three ODIs and two Tests.
Dhoni’s spot in the Indian team has been a source of constant debate in the last 12 months and intensified during the World Cup, during which even Sachin Tendulkar questioned the intent he showed during his innings against Afghanistan. India captain Virat Kohli tried to douse the flames of the debate every time he was asked for his views, saying the dressing room retained full confidence in Dhoni.
ESPNcricinfo understands Dhoni has not spoken about his future with the team management or selectors.
In addition to Dhoni, the selectors are also bound to manage the workloads of the key players, especially strike bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami. Bumrah was India’s best bowler at the World Cup, and perhaps their joint-best player in terms of impact alongside Rohit Sharma. Shami was India’s second-highest wicket-taker behind Bumrah, with 14 wickets at an average of 13.78 and strike rate of 15.0, and was a constant threat with his pace and seam movement. He was rested from India’s final group match against Sri Lanka and left out from the semi-final against New Zealand, with Bhuvneshwar Kumar preferred for his death bowling and ability with the bat.
The selectors will also verify the fitness of Shikhar Dhawan and Vijay Shankar, who were both injured during the World Cup and had to leave the tournament midway. Both players are currently at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, undergoing rehabilitation. (ESPNCricinfo)