Cricket: India's Dhoni happy with 'problem of plenty'

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni heads into the Super Eights stage of the World Twenty20 this week delighted to have the enviable problem of which player to leave out.

A revamped India condemned England to their heaviest T20 defeat -- by 90 runs -- in Colombo on Sunday after bowling the defending champions out for their lowest T20 total of 80.

India rested three regulars -- seamer Zaheer Khan, spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and opener Virender Sehwag -- for the group A match because both teams had already qualified for the Super Eights.

Veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh marked his return to the Indian team after a year with 4-12, including a wicket maiden in his first over, and leg-spinner Piyush Chawla took 2-13.

With Ashwin, Harbhajan and Chawla fighting for the spinners' spots in the Super Eights and a settled batting order to choose from, Dhoni said his team was well prepared for the next battle.

"We do have a problem of plenty," Dhoni said. "But I can assure you, a problem of plenty is better than not having that one extra guy.

"But bigger teams await us and we need to be consistent. In every match, we have to be at our best. Hopefully, we will do that in the next three matches."

India face Australia, South Africa and either Pakistan or Bangladesh in what is being touted as the "group of death", from which the top two will advance to the semi-finals.

India, who recorded successive wins against Afghanistan and England in the first round, will remain in Colombo for the next stage and play in the familiar surroundings of the Premadasa Stadium.

Dhoni praised the 32-year-old Harbhajan, who was recalled for the World Twenty20 after being sidelined due to injury and poor form since August last year.

"Harbhajan bowled well," Dhoni said after the off-spinner recorded the best T20 figures by an Indian bowler and was named the man of the match.

"He did not bowl short. He invited the batsmen to drive by pitching the ball up. He made good use of variations, plus his mindset was very aggressive.

"He was very focused and he really wanted to do well. It's a very big positive for us because if we are playing one batsman short, he is someone who can slog down the order. He is a very good option for us."

The Indian skipper refused to speculate which spinners he will pick in future.

"Frankly, I don't know who will play," Dhoni said. "But I am quite happy with the problem of plenty. The selection will depend on the wicket. If it's a fresh and hard-rolled wicket, spinners may not be that effective.

"And it will be a difficult decision which bowler to drop to play the seventh batsman. The middle order has done well and the two openers we have (Gautam Gambhir and Sehwag) can win matches on their own."

Dhoni also backed Rohit Sharma, whose unbeaten 55 off 33 balls against England was his first half-century in the last eight one-day or T20 international innings.

"I personally rate him very highly," Dhoni said. "He is someone who can play strokes right from the start. Plus he runs well between the wickets."

India's first Super Eights match is against Australia on Friday.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Punjab pull off another big chase

Punjab pull off another big chase

GAME 7, SHARJAH—Maxwell, Miller, Pujara chase down Rajasthan's 192. More »

Royal test for Kings

Royal test for Kings

Preview — Clash of philosophies between Australia-centric teams More »

Have nothing to prove to anybody — Sehwag

Have nothing to prove to anybody — Sehwag

The Nawab of Najafgarh says a good run in IPL could help his chances of a comeback on India's tour to England in June. More »

Shastri in proposed IPL probe panel

Shastri in proposed IPL probe panel

Some members stressed on the need for proposing names with an "impeccable record and clean image". More »

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Furious fifties by Duminy and Dinesh Karthik end a long losing streak for the Daredevils. More »

Five things England must do to bounce back

Five things England must do to bounce back

England have appointed a new head coach in Peter Moores. More »

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

Royal Challengers overcame a stutter to cruise to the small target they were set by Mumbai Indians. More »

‘Felt like helpless minority’

‘Felt like helpless minority’

Former BCCI treasurer Ajay Shirke says emotions got the better of Srinivasan and he tried to oversimplify things by calling Meiyappan an “enthusiast.” More »

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

His status as president of TNCA makes him eligible to attend the Working Committee meeting on Sunday. More »

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

Kevin Pietersen's hopes of reviving his international career appeared to end Saturday when ECB managing director Paul Downton said there was 'no way back'… More »

The world record that nearly wasn't

The world record that nearly wasn't

Twenty years ago this week, Brian Lara became Test cricket's highest scorer, but he almost didn't make it. More »

Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell seems to project an icy disdain when at the crease. Match situations rarely faze him and the bubble in which he plays excludes everyone … More »

Moores gets second stint as coach

Moores gets second stint as coach

In a two-year spell from 2007 to 2009, the 51-year-old Moores led England in seven Test series. More »

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh's senior players will have three sessions with a psychological skill development coach later this month More »

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

Dalmiya feels that Srinivasan’s ‘power hungry’ attitude isn’t helping matters. More »

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

The 36-year-old believes the T20 format and rule changes in 50-over matches have made a real difference. More »

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

BCCI members want independent probe

BCCI members want independent probe

The board members are realising after the Supreme Court's observations that something has to be done — IS Bindra More »

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Preview — The threat of Sunil Narine looms large again. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Preview — Given the firepower in both line-ups, Dubai crowd may see another high-scorer More »

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »