Dhoni-Gambhir captaincy debate: Record, temperament show Gauti has it in him to replace Mahi in Tests

The Indian Premier League not only gave India a chance to celebrate a new winner but it also did bring to the fore talks of Gautam Gambhir succeeding Mahendra Singh Dhoni as the captain of Indian Test Team.

Gambhir, who led Kolkata Knight Riders to title victory in the recently concluded IPL, could not stay away from the discussion and said that he is ready for the Test captaincy and would be honoured if the responsibility comes to him and is all set to face new challenges.

With Dhoni having hinted at a possible retirement from the longer format of the game by 2013 a few months ago, and with Gambhir at the peak of his career, the baton should be passed on.

Dhoni is no doubt one of the best captains of Indian ODI and T20 and those formats are like tailor-made for him, considering his batting prowess, but when it comes to Test, he has suffered over the year. In the 69 Tests that he has played he scored only 3,509 at an average of 37.32, which includes five centuries and in comparison Gambhir holds much more superior record than him. Gambhir averages 45.26 in 48 matches and has scored 3,712 including nine centuries.

Dhoni is a good player but when it comes to Test some doubts do arise over his technique. Dhoni comes to bat at number 7 which is very crucial in a Test side and he has disappointed many a times at that position. His lack of technique has made former greats comment on his technique. Sourav Ganguly one of the most successful captains of India went up to the extent of saying that Dhoni does not qualify as a Test player.

Dhoni, who has hinted at the retirement, should give up the captaincy himself as India would be playing in sub-continent conditions and if he decides to retire somewhere before a foreign tour next year, things can become very difficult for Gambhir. Whereas if Dhoni passes on the baton now, then Gambhir can come on board and have an experience of few Test matches before actually going out with the team on the testing in the foreign soil.

Gambhir is also by far looks the best bet for Indian Test captaincy and even Dhoni did not shy from saying that the southpaw is more aggressive than him as a captain. And that is a point where Dhoni has been lacking in the past with his captaincy. He does not have the aggression required to lead a Test side and that has proved detrimental to the team’s cause in the past.

Gambhir’s rise to captaincy should not be met with any sort of speculation as he is one of the tried and trusted members of this team. He has redeemed the KKR side and also his international captaincy record is blemish free. He has captained India in six ODI’s and won all of them. So his past record establishes that he is a captain material and his appointment to the top job in the team is bound to bring success.

By Samikshan Dutta Choudhury
Indian Sports News