There is no room for sentiments for us: Dhoni

Chennai: Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Tuesday said that they were professional cricketers and that there was no room for sentiments for them. Dhoni was reacting to the criticism emanating from some quarters, including former cricketers like Sunil Gavaskar and Kirti Azad over the India-Pakistan series that the BCCI gave a go ahead on Monday.

"We are professional cricketers. The series will have to be played and we have to get ready for it. Sentiment does not play any part since we are taught to be professionals on field," Dhoni said at a press conference on Tuesday.

Dhoni said that the short series against Pakistan would be a bit tough for the players because of the hectic schedule but added that they would have to be ready and do well against their arch-rivals. Asked about the three ODI and two Twenty20 Internationals against Pakistan in December-January, Dhoni said, "We have to be positive and we have to understand that we are representing the country. It will be a bit tough because of the hectic schedule but we have to do well against Pakistan also," he said ahead of the team's departure for the limited overs series in Sri Lanka.

Talking about the Sri Lanka tour, Dhoni echoed Gautam Gambhir’s views saying that the tour of Sri Lanka was indeed very important and the team’s main objective as of now was to get off to a winning start and carry on the momentum further on in the season.

"Our cricket season has started and we want to play best for our country's image. We want to start the season well. The conditions in Sri Lanka are not too different. Certain things change but the pattern of cricket remains the same,” said Dhoni after the end of the two-day camp in Chennai.
India will play five ODI’s and a T20 game in Sri Lanka staring July 21.

Gambhir and Virender Sehwag in the recent past said that India won the due to a good team and captain is a good as his team. Denying to stir any unnecessary controversy ahead of the start of the season Dhoni somewhat spoke on the same lines and said that good team indeed matters a lot and a captain is just as good as the team.  “An ordinary team with an extraordinary captain cannot win the World.”