There were debates and deliberations over the position of MS Dhoni and the seasoned campaigner answered the detractors with a man of the series performance in the recently concluded ODI series against Australia. There were concerns over his strike rate, but the man himself conceded that he decides on the approach to be adopted depending on the situation of the match.
Head coach of the Indian team Ravi Shastri has put all his weight behind the former captain and has even said that there is no one who can replace Dhoni. Also, that no one could ever replace Dhoni when he decides to hang his boots.
"You can't," Shastri told Michael Vaughan in an interview published in the Daily Telegraph when asked about when Dhoni retires.
'Enjoy while it lasts'
"Such players only come once in 30 or 40 years. That is what I tell Indians - enjoy it while it lasts. When he goes, you will see a void that will be very hard to fill. I know there is Rishabh Pant, but to be an ambassador for the sport for so long is amazing," he added.
His prowess has been on the wane over the past few years -- the explosive finishes have disappeared from his game -- but the team management has maintained that he is indispensable to the team and that his participation in the World Cup is imperative for India's chance.
"That is because he has the best angle. He sees things. He is great with the guys, they all worship him. This entire team has been built by him because he was captain for ten years. To have that kind of respect in the dressing room and experience is massive," Shastri said.
Speaking about Rishabh Pant, Shastri said that the young man was in constant touch with Dhoni even during the Test series and that he kept asking for inputs in order to improve his game, which was a vindication of the immense respect the seasoned pro demands in the group.
"His [Pant] hero is MS. Every day he is on the phone to MS. I think during the Test series, he must have spoken more to MS than anyone else. It is great when you have that mutual respect. Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni, the respect they have for each other is unbelievable, so it makes my job in the dressing room so much easier," Shastri added.