Dhoni defends Munaf’s inclusion

February 17th, 2008 - 9:48 pm ICT by admin  

Adelaide, Feb 17 (IANS) Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni supported the inclusion of Munaf Patel in the side as the pacer came in for some scathing attack from former captain Sunil Gavaskar for his shoddy approach during India’s 50-run loss to Australia in the tri-series here Sunday. Gavaskar questioned Patel’s on-field attitude and wondered as to why he was picked in the side at the cost of young Praveen Kumar and leg-spinner Piyush Chawla.

“At this level, you have to be good at least on two aspects and Munaf is useless as fielder and as a batsman. He has not shown the attitude,” Gavaskar said.

“There is no point in playing him when Irfan, Sreesanth and Ishant Sharma is there in the team. Somebody who can bat lower down the order as Piyush Chawla or Praveen Kumar would have been a better option,” said Gavaskar, who had questioned Patel’s commitment earlier also.

Dhoni, however, said he preferred Patel as he bowls to the field and it makes his job easier.

“He does not think too much. You set him a field and he will bowl to that. With somebody, like Sreesanth in the side, it is difficult. So I thought of giving Munaf a chance. I am happy with the way he bowled today,” Dhoni replied to Gavsakar’s query in ESPN.

Gavaskar replied back with a smile, “you mean he does think much, that is why he is in the team”.

Patel has been in firing zone before as well with questioned raised on his commitment and fitness level.

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