Holding backs Dhoni over Stokes’ comment
Former West Indies fast bowler Michael Holding doesn’t support England cricketer Ben Stokes’ controversial comment over former India captain MS Dhoni. Stokes has raised allegation recently in his book ‘On Fire’ that India lost the match against England during World Cup 2019 willingly and Dhoni led from the front in this lose.
England put a score of 337 runs in 50 overs against India in last year’s World Cup group stage match. But team India hardly managed to score only 306/5 in 50 overs. Stokes mentioned in his book that the Indian batsmen weren’t keen on winning the match.
“Arguably, the way MS Dhoni played when he came in with 112 runs needed from 11 overs was even stranger. He appeared more intent on singles than sixes. Even with a dozen balls remaining, India could still have won. There was little or no intent from him [Dhoni] or his partner Kedar Jadhav. To me, while victory is still possible you always go for broke,” Stokes wrote in his book.
After it came into sight, Holding rejected the claims made by Stokes saying that people write anything in the books for some attention.
“Well, people will write anything in books these days. Because people are a lot freer with their opinions and when they are writing books, they need to be making headlines at times,”
Holding said in a interview.
Holding revealed that the Indian side had put in their 100% efforts on that day. But it wasn’t their day and they lost the match. “But, to be honest, a lot of people watching that game perhaps wouldn’t have arrived at the same conclusion that Ben Stokes arrived at that India was not trying to win. It wasn’t the game that India had to win, but I don’t think anyone can say that was a team tactic to lose the game.” Holding added.
“I watched that game, and it appeared to me as if India weren’t putting up their 100%. But I realized it wasn’t the case when the expression on MS Dhoni’s face told me that he desperately wanted to win, so I don’t think it was a team decision not to try to win,” the pacer further added.