Mumbai: Former Test cricketers Chandu Borde, Ajit Wadekar and Dilip Vengsarkar expressed surprise at Mahendra Singh Dhoni's decision to quit the longer format of the game with immediate effect with one more match to go in the four-game series against Australia.
However, both Borde and Wadekar said the decision was understandable, especially with the country not doing well overseas under Dhoni's leadership over the last few years.
"To me it was a real surprise. I thought he will play for one or two more years in Test cricket as he's a very fit person," said former captain and ex-chief selector Vengsarkar.
"It came as a surprise, didn't it, that he quit midstream. It (decision to quit) could have been taken earlier. But perhaps he thought it was the right time to hand over the mantle to the next man," Borde told PTI.
"I think he has quit in the larger interest of the game," Borde added.
Wadekar too felt Dhoni could have waited till the end of the series before announcing the decision.
"The decision was extraordinary. I feel he should have waited till the end of the series (after January 6-10, 2015 fourth Test at Sydney). He has already missed the first Test (at Adelaide because of a prior injury)," Wadekar said.
But the former India skipper, who had to quit as captain as well as player in 1974 after his side was humiliated 0-3 in England, said Dhoni's record as Test captain of late has dipped in overseas conditions.
"His performance as captain overseas in Test cricket has not been good," remarked 73-year-old Wadekar.
Vengsarkar, while conceding Dhoni's captaincy record overseas has been "average", pointed out that he just did not have a bowling attack capable of dismissing rival teams twice away from home.
"His overall record overseas has been average, but India does not have the bowling attack to take 20 wickets in overseas conditions," the 116-Test veteran said.