India's chief selector MSK Prasad has indicated that Mahendra Singh Dhoni is not part of the team's long-term plans. He announced that they are 'moving on' from the legend and will instead give opportunities to the young talent.
Dhoni led the World Cup-winning side in 2011 and had a long successful run at the apex level of cricket. Fast forward to 2019 World Cup in July, his power-hitting ability wasn't the same which prompted the selectors to look beyond the veteran.
His name was missing in the national squad announced for the upcoming three-match T20I series against Bangladesh set to commence from next month. Moreover, Dhoni didn't feature in the recently concluded limited-overs series versus South Africa.
Prasad unveiled his future plans in no uncertain terms about banking on youngsters to deliver the goods rather than looking back and he specifically mentioned Rishabh Pant for the glovework duties.
"This is our clear thought process that post-World Cup we are focusing on Rishabh Pant only," he was quoted as saying by the PTI news agency, in response to a query about Dhoni's future.
"I made it very clear post the World Cup that we are moving on. We are giving opportunities to youngsters and see that they establish themselves in the side" Prasad said while sharing the selection committee's strategy.
Hailed as a superstar in India and around the world for his numerous feats, Dhoni took retirement from Test cricket in 2014 after amassing 4,876 runs from 90 matches.
Dhoni, who epitomized calmness and demonstrated brilliant tactical acumen on the field, has got stupendously impressive white-ball credentials.
He made 10,773 runs from 350 ODIs, but his form has started to decline this year which has put selectors in a quandary as the backup keepers are knocking on the committee's doors.
However, keeping the stature and incredible achievements of Dhoni into view, Prasad has seconded Sourav Ganguly, BCCI chief, and incumbent captain Virat Kohli's stance of leaving the retirement decision to Dhoni himself.
"Everything is his personal decision. We have already laid the roadmap for the future in the way we are selecting teams" Prasad remarked.