Mohali, Oct 20: Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni today defended his decision to entrust struggling pacer Ishant Sharma to bowl the 48th over which yielded 30 runs to hand the third ODI to Australia from a winning position, saying that he was just using an option.
"Well, then the option was that even I could have bowled. You have to see what all options are available to you. Vinay Kumar had also bowled, he had also gone for some runs. I thought let's see by having a change," Dhoni said at the post-match press conference on Saturday night (October 19).
"If Ishant bowls, then I will have the option of bowling Vinay from other end if he does not bowl well. However, it's always easy after seeing result to say what should have been or not been done," he said.
James Faulkner scored 30 runs from the 48th over with the help of a four and four sixes to seal a four-wicket win for Australia over India who seemed cruising at one stage. Dhoni said in hindsight though he should have given the ball to Vinay Kumar.
"May be if it would have gone to Vinay, 10-12 runs would have been given not more than that. But, but in cricket it does not go that way. You try to take the right decision, sometimes it works, sometimes it does not," he said.
The team for the remaining four ODIs will be picked today but Dhoni said he believed in giving struggling players to give a longer rope.
"I will talk to selectors if it concerns selection. There are some batsmen who have not made runs, there are bowlers who have gone for runs. All of a sudden when you lose one or two matches you want the playing eleven bowlers to be removed.
"They are part of the side, because they are talented and let's back them. The bowlers who are waiting in wings, they can wait a bit more. Once somebody goes out of the side, tendency is that they are forgotten, they keep talking about new bowler. I always feel that people who are in the side should be given the rope, does not matter if he is a bowler or a batsman."