Legendary former India batsman VVS Laxman said that its time for MS Dhoni to take a backseat in the T20Is and that the former India skipper must give chance to youngsters.
Laxman comments come on the back of India's loss at Rajkot in the second T20I as despite Virat Kohli's brilliant half-century, India failed to chase down 197 on a flat track.
India failed to seal the series in the second T20I and Laxman feels that since Dhoni fails to attack straightaway like he used to do earlier, he might put the team under pressure.
"In T20s, MS Dhoni's role is at No 4. He requires more time to get his eye in and then do the job. But today [Saturday] was a classical example because when Virat Kohli was batting, Dhoni had to give strike to Kohli. Kohli's strike rate was 160, MS Dhoni's strike rate was 80. That's not good enough when India were chasing a mammoth total," Laxman said in a post-match show.
"I still feel it's time for MS Dhoni to give youngsters a chance in T20 format. It will be an opportunity for a youngster to blossom and get confidence playing international cricket. He is definitely an integral part of ODI cricket," he added.
Although fellow expert Aakash Chopra didn't agree completely, the former India opener did admit that Dhoni is struggling in the T20 format.
During the chase, Dhoni walked out at a precarious position with India struggling at 67/4. However, the match was very much in balance as skipper Kohli was in full flow and was finding the boundaries.
However, pressure mounted on Kohli as Dhoni failed to rotate strike and given the target, India had to attack from both ends of the wicket. Early in his innings, Dhoni struggled to pick the spinners and although clubbed a couple into the stands, the required run rate shot up dramatically.
Dhoni mane 16 off 18 balls at the end of 15th over and although he ended up getting 49 off 37, the former India skipper left too much for India as New Zealand won the decider by 40 runs.
However, Kohli backed his former skipper and defended Dhoni's approach.
"Eventually we weren't good enough with the bat. When you're chasing 200, all the batsmen need to chip in, or one batsman has to keep going at a 200 strike-rate. Tried to do my best. M.S. (Dhoni) was very good at the end. But we were left with a very difficult task," Kohli said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
With the series tied at 1-1, India will look to seal the T20I series in the final match at Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday.