Consistency will be key to retain Champions Trophy: Dhoni

New Delhi : Indian limited-overs skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has thrown his support behind next year’s ICC Champions Trophy and identified consistency as the key to retain the prestigious title they had won in 2013.

Dhoni, who inspired India to the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013 a couple of years after guiding his side to World Cup victory, also said he was aware of the challenges the event poses.

“Having won the event in 2013, we know how intense this event can be and we are under no illusion that it will be any different next year,” he remarked.

India have been grouped with Asian rivals Pakistan and Sri Lanka, as well as 1998 winner South Africa. India will open their campaign against traditional rivals Pakistan at Edgbaston, Birmingham, on 4 June.

“In the ICC Champions Trophy, it doesn’t matter which other sides are in your group or who your semi-final or final opponent is. You have limited time and the key to success is consistency, and being on top of your game each time you step out on to the field. There is very little room for error.

“I am sure the ICC Champions Trophy, like any other ICC event, will be well organised and the team and I are looking forward to a lot of crowd support, which was one of the factors that helped us across the line in 2013,” Dhoni added.

The eight top ranked sides as on 30 September 2015, led by world champion Australia and defending champion India, will feature in the 18-day tournament from 1 to 18 June 2017 during which 15 matches will be played in Birmingham, Cardiff and London (The Oval). (ANI)