Top three not playing together as they slow:Dhoni

Brisbane: Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni today backed the team`s rotation policy in the top order, saying the top three batsmen were not playing each game because they are slow on the field. Dhoni explained the reasons why Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar and Gautam Gambhir are not playing all the games together, even as India lost the tri-series game against Australia by 110 runs at the Gabba here.

"It might happen (they playing together, but) it would affect our fielding in a big way, it`s not only these three, there are quite a few other players who are also slow on the field. If you really add it up, you would have only two or three good fielders.

"These fielders are not bad but on these big fields, they are slightly on the slower side. They would be exploited once the ball goes to them, the Australians and Sri Lankans would look for those two or three runs to put pressure on their body. Their throwing and diving needs to be good," Dhoni said.

The skipper said fielding in the big grounds of Australia could lead to breakdowns. "They are safe fielders on the slower side. The pressure would be on them. They would have to throw from positions where there would be pressure on them. There would be breakdowns. It`s not like India where the ball goes to a boundary and you just throw it back. Here, you can pull muscle or a hamstring.

"Batting and bowling is something which has variables but fielding is one department where you could always score. It keeps the morale of the team up, there is intensity." India didn`t field all that well today and their bowling also crumbled in the final 10 overs, which Dhoni put it down to cramps due to extreme heat.

"This is the best fielding side we have got, there were a few catches which were dropped, but it happens in cricket. It was a phase we dropped a few catches, hopefully we wouldn`t do in whatever games we are left to play. In the last 10 overs, bowlers felt the heat right from the second powerplay. When you see your best fast bowler battling through cramps, that was the reason I bowled Zaheer through. I didn`t want to lose any overs from him and kept Vinay Kumar for the last few overs. He also felt the cramps.

"The last 10 overs they batted really well, our bowlers were not able to execute the way they could have if they were not battling cramps or the heat. It was hot out there. You are supposed to go through that phase but I felt they found it difficult. The absence of breeze only added to the woes. It`s not that everybody wasn`t hydrated. But there was no breeze here and it becomes very hot. Once you put pressure on fielders, they have to put it on their body, not let batsmen score doubles off them. It`s very demanding and we see fielders get cramps.

"Like Rahul bhai (Rahul Dravid) used to sweat more than others. If you are someone like that, it becomes difficult to hydrate." It was also noticeable that Dhoni didn`t use Ravinder Jadeja at all during Australia`s innings. "I didn`t want to bowl Jadeja when the left-handers were there. If you see (Matthew) Wade was settled once (David) Warner got out. I thought I was better off using an off-spinner and Raina bowled really well. "Then Hussey came in and got settled. I was happy to bowl through Raina. There was no real reason to bowl Jadeja through just because he is there. "If there was one more right-hander, I might have used him."