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Optimistic Dhoni confident of bouncing back

Dhoni said it is imperative for his team to rectify the growing tendency of losing the first Test match of series.

Press Trust Of India |December 22, 2010, 8:39 PM IST
Optimistic Dhoni confident of bouncing back

Durban: Stung by the humiliating defeat against South Africa at Centurion, Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Wednesday said it is imperative for his team to rectify the growing tendency of losing the first Test match of a home or overseas series.

"That's one quality we have," a sarcastic Dhoni told reporters here, referring to India's innings and 25 runs defeat in the first Test.

"We don't really do well in the first Test. It's not only in India but even overseas. However, if you look at the previous records, we have come back well in the later stages.

Hopefully, we will be back in the next two Test matches," an optimistic Dhoni said.

The Indian captain conceded that even though they devised a few plans for the South African batsmen, it didn't work out well.

The Indian bowlers were plundered for 620 runs at the Centurion and they managed to dismiss only four South African batsmen.

"It was difficult because there was not much help from the wicket. We don't have bowlers with express pace. They don't bowl in 140s so they have to be even more precise with their line and length," Dhoni tried to defend the pace trio of S Sreesanth, Ishant Sharma and rookie Jaydev Unadkat.

"We tried different fields. We tried to contain them but were unsuccessful for the better part of their innings," the Indian captain said.

When asked whether pace spearhead Zaheer Khan's absence made a big difference in the first Test, he said, "It's not that whenever Zaheer plays, he gets wickets. But with the amount of experience in his repertoire, he always has a back-up plan ready in case the first strategy doesn't work."

"It's always difficult to predict the performance of an individual. Especially, we talk a lot about an individual when he is not present," Dhoni added.

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 5211 116
2 New Zealand 3959 110
3 Australia 4320 108
4 England 5253 105
5 South Africa 3537 98
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6967 124
2 India 7939 118
3 New Zealand 5347 116
4 South Africa 5602 112
5 Australia 5915 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 8926 270
2 Australia 7815 269
3 England 6407 267
4 India 12141 264
5 South Africa 6220 259
see more