Ex-India pacer Ashish Nehra said the former Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was always open to a chat with the players and was always willing to help anyone who needed it.
Nehra said that even though many think that Dhoni did not speak much, he never turned away anyone who asked for his help and suggestion and that the door of his hotel room was open to everyone.
“People think that Dhoni doesn’t talk much. That is not the case. His room would remain open in the night after matches. Anyone could walk in, order food and discuss cricket,” Nehra said while speaking to former India opener Aakash Chopra on his show ‘Aakash Vani’ as quoted by IANS.
The 2011 World Cup-winner also said that Dhoni maintained this tradition in both the national team and in his Indian Premier League side Chennai Super Kings.
“Be it in CSK or in the Indian team, Dhoni would pass on the message on what he thinks a player needs to do during a conversation and that would be enough for the players to get the drift,” added Nehra who played a lot of cricket under Dhoni’s captaincy both for India and at Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The 41-year-old, who played for a brief period under Virat Kohli as well, said that the current Indian captain still had a long way to go before he could be categorised with some of the greatest captains of the game.
Nehra believed that the present Indian team, that are often compared with other great teams like the Australias side in the 90s and the 2000s, have not yet reached that level.
“This Indian team has to still cover a lot of distance in order to match up with that Australia team (led by Steve Waugh and then Ricky Ponting),” the 41-year-old said.
“You are talking about an Australian team which won three consecutive World Cups and before that reached the final in 1996, won 18-19 Test matches in home and away conditions,” he added.
He also did not appreciate the fact that every now and then team combination is being tinkered with.
“It’s not like this Indian team can not reach there but I believe the core group is very important. A person gets confused after watching many dishes on the table and so it’s important to have fewer but better dishes,” Nehra made his displeasure clear.