Shoaib Akhtar has stated that MS Dhoni is unnecessarily dragging his career for far too long and should have retired after the 2019 World Cup in England. Dhoni has not played a competitive game since the World Cup semifinal in July but was preparing to make a much-anticipated comeback with the IPL.
It was speculated that the 2019 ICC World Cup will be the last hurray for MS Dhoni in international cricket but the former Indian skipper kept everyone guessing by declaring a sabbatical. He was to return in the 2020 IPL but that was put onto hold due to the Coronavirus scare. Speaking on Star Sports' show, former Pakistani pacer Shoaib Akhtar stated that Dhoni should leave cricket with dignity and should have retired after the World Cup.
“This guy has served to the best of his ability. He should leave cricket with dignity. I don’t know why he dragged it for so long. He should have retired after the World Cup. If I would have been in his place, I would have hung up my boots. I could have played shorter formats for three-four years but I left (after the 2011 WC) as I wasn’t into the game 100 per cent. So why drag?” he asked, reported Sportstar.
There were speculations that if he had done well in the IPL, he could have been in the plane for the T20 World Cup in October-November in Australia but now that seems to be gone. Akhtar praised Dhoni for his contributions to Indian cricket but stressed that he shouldn't have played on after the failure to take India over the line in the 50-over World Cup.
“As a country, you should let him go with a lot of respect and dignity. Give him a nice send-off. He has won you the World Cup and done wonders for India. He is a wonderful human being at the same time. But right now, he seems to be stuck. When he could not finish the game in the semifinal (against New Zealand), I felt he should have retired but he can only answer why he didn’t. He should have played a farewell series after the World Cup may be and then said goodbye in a manner befitting his great stature,” the former pacer added.
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