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Captain Cool needs to chill

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International cricket.  Fatigue.  Burnout.

Three words that go hand in hand in this decade; previously they were seldom used when describing cricket. Traveling, flight, hotels, training session, gym sessions, and media commitments - the list is endless in the unforgiving grueling life of an international cricketer.

It doesn't help when you have all those factors pulling you down along with the pressure of leading, what is without doubt the most passionate & cricket frenzy nation, India with the most unforgiving fans (yes 'fans'). Mahendra Singh Dhoni has that unenviable task.

For nor is he only the captain of the side and keeps wicket, he's even an important batsman in both formats of the game. He's usually consolidating a wobbly start or accelerating to achieve a defendable total. Oh, he has his ineffective bowlers to worry about too. Being captain & 'keeper, he spends maximum energy and concentration on every ball delivered in both formats of the game. That’s something he undoubtedly should.

But all obviously isn't well with MS on the injury front. In the ongoing 3rd Test vs Sri Lanka, he was seen receiving treatment from the Physio at numerous occasions. There seems to be a problem with his middle finger on the right hand. So heavily strapped is his finger that he needs cuttings on the inners of the keeping gloves to fit it in. Support has been given from the other side of the finger to prevent further damage.

With Dhoni's cricketing calendar being as busy as a broker at the Bombay Stock Exhcange with series coming thick and fast,  back & forth and then the 2011 World Cup at home, the smartest thing is to make the move and give the 'keeping duties to Dinesh Karthik - at least till the time his injury has completely healed.

His counter-part in the Sri Lankan series, Kumar Sangakkara is doing the same and has shown an admirable improvement in his Test record, Dhoni should follow suit (not his thing but still). In fact, MS himself has spoken about managing injuries to keep the big guns fresh and & fit for the major tournaments.

With a Test ranking to maintain, and a World Cup to challenge for at home, and add the Test and ODI series against Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, the Indian skipper has enough on his plate already. And with others in and out of the side due to form or due to injury, cricket crazy India needs its captain, the finest & smartest going around at the moment, to be fit & to lead from the front for the charge that can be described as one of the most critical phase for the future of Indian Cricket. And for their fans too.



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