Dean Jones backs 'undervalued' Dhoni to become among top three all time Indian greats

Sydney, Mar 2 (ANI): Former Australian batsman Dean Jones has backed Mahendra Singh Dhoni to end his career among the top three all time great Indian batsmen, adding the World Cup winning captain is not given due respect by the fans.

"If I asked you who were the top three Indian cricketers of all time, would you have M.S. Dhoni among them? Well, if you don't, you will by the time he retires," Jones wrote in his column for the Sydney Morning Herald.

"The recent retirements of Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly and V.V.S. Laxman have allowed Dhoni the opportunity to bat higher and show us all that his batting alone can match some of the greats," he added.

"Sure he hasn't made the runs yet, but after his epic 224 in Chennai, he has gained even more respect from the hardcore Indian fans," he further wrote.

Jones added: "Dhoni is an enigmatic figure in Indian cricket. He doesn't have the technique or grace of Sachin Tendulkar, Dravid, Sunil Gavaskar or Gundappa Viswanath. Nor does he possess the silky soft hands of Syed Kirmani behind the stumps."

"Yet many Indian fans believe Dhoni doesn't have the strategy or leadership skills of past great Indian captains such as Ganguly, Gavaskar or the Nawab of Pataudi. But in terms of games won, he is level with Ganguly as India's most successful Test captain," he wrote."Dhoni is one hell of a cricketer. He has smashed all of the leading bowlers in one game or another. His fitness levels are amazing and running between the wickets is exhilarating," he added.

"He is a rare breed of cricketer, a momentum-changer. When he starts swinging, he can change the course of the match. Then, in the blink of an eye, when all things are going his way, he backs off and plays the percentages again and shuts opposition teams out," he further wrote.

"I firmly believe Dhoni will end up as one of the top three Indian players of all time when he retires. As for the other two, that's a discussion for another day," he concluded. (ANI)


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