Indian cricket team bowling coach Bharat Arun labelled the criticism against Mahendra Singh Dhoni at the recently-concluded 2019 World Cup as ‘unfair’ following India’s heartbreaking semi-final exit at where they lost to New Zealand.
The veteran wicket-keeper batsman’s inability to rotate strike and score heavily in the death overs became a cause of concern at the showpiece event. Arun, however, defended Dhoni’s performances saying his contribution cannot be understated.
“It was very unfair. He has contributed so much to the Indian team. He is a legend. In fact, on many occasions Virat Kohli bounces off ideas off Dhoni, respects him. In the semi-final, we were all confident till Dhoni was there. We could see he was lining himself up for the big hits in the final over. Sadly, the run out happened,” he was quoted as saying by The Hindu.
After India’s surprise exit, some reports suggested there was a discord between India skipper Virat Kohli and deputy Rohit Sharma. It was even rumoured that a lack of harmony existed between the team management and the support staff but Arun rubbished all of the above.
“It has to be seen to be believed. Rohit often runs up to Kohli to discuss things. They get along very well, share great admiration for each other’s ability. Kohli led the side well, is maturing as a captain and it’s nice that he has Rohit for support. The spirit in the camp was wonderful throughout,” Arun stated.
“It’s not that we [team management] agree on everything. We have our arguments and discussions on various aspects like the composition of the team and the strategy. Everyone voices his opinion. But, at the end of the day, the other person’s view is respected and a collective decision is taken,” he revealed.
Earlier this week, the Board of Control for Cricket in India invited fresh applications for the post of the Indian team support staff. Head coach Ravi Shastri, Arun, batting coach Sanjay Bangar and fielding coach R Sridhar, who were handed a 45-day contract extension following the World Cup, will have to reapply again.