Dhoni, Kohli
India's captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni (L) talks to team mate Virat Kohli in the nets during a practice session at the Sydney Cricket Ground January 2, 2012. Reuters

India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has rejected suggestions of in-fighting in his team on the tour of Australia, saying the claims were possibly the result of a beer-induced fantasy.

India's captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni (L) talks to team mate Virat Kohli in the nets during a practice session at the Sydney Cricket Ground January 2, 2012.

Australia's Brad Haddin earlier this week said the Indians, who trail 2-0 in the four test series, turn on each other when things are not going their way, while another media report said Dhoni was at odds with vice captain Virender Sehwag.

However Dhoni, speaking on the eve of the start of third test at the WACA, said his team remained united and were all moving in the same direction.

As far as fights are concerned, I've never seen the Indian team fight, he told a news conference on Thursday, adding with a laugh that the in-fighting claims were perhaps fueled by alcohol.

So you know it's something that I think is happening maybe after a few beers, with the opposition just sitting and dreaming of it because it's not really happening.

That's something we are really proud of, when we talk about the dressing room atmosphere and how we love each other's success. We just try and strengthen it further.

Dhoni was equally dismissive of criticism that his team, who relinquished the world number one test ranking earlier this year after a 4-0 whitewash in England, did not care enough about losing test matches.

If losing two test matches and staying on the ground weeping for four hours means it is hurting, definitely we are grown up boys and we won't really do that, he said.

It does hurt a bit and in sport, you want to improve and come back. We won't cry and sit on the chair and say it isn't going our way.


Dhoni returned to his beer theme when discussing two incidents, one off and one on the pitch, where India players have been photographed making rude gestures to fans.

I think we need to get smart as to what needs to be done and if we can avoid gestures, that's best. Crucially we have to get smart as to what people are trying to do, he said.

Everybody's fantastic early in the morning, but after the tea session, after a couple of barrels of beer, it gets a bit difficult. The Aussie fans, they are a bit aggressive in the sense that they are quite verbal about it.

But it's something to need to learn, how to interact with the fans, how you convert them into someone who wants you to perform as an individual.

India will not name their side for the match until Friday morning with Dhoni anxious to see how green the wicket is before deciding on any changes from the team that lost by 122 runs in Melbourne and an innings and 68 runs in Sydney.

Another defeat would make it seven in a row in tests overseas after the drubbing in England but Dhoni refused to contemplate whether a similar whitewash against an Australia team in transition would be worse.

When you die, you die, you don't see as to which is the better way to die, he said.

We want to get back in this series. We learned a lot from (the England) series and we've learned a lot from this series also. We just have to implement it in the coming two test matches and hope for the best.