The Board of Control for Cricket in India [BCCI] announced the list for the annual contracts of Indian cricketers for the period- October 2019- September 2020, on Thursday, and with Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s name dropped from the annual-retainer list, the news spread like wildfire on social media.
Fans feared for the inevitable as #ThankyouDhoni began to trend all over social media. Dhoni, who has not played a single international fixture post India’s heartbreaking exit from the 2019 World Cup, was previously a part of the A-grade contract. It was also reported that Dhoni was intimated by the BCCI of their decision.
But, on the very same day, after the contract-snub, the former World Cup-winning captain surprised everyone-including the Jharkhand Cricket team- when he turned up for the training session
MS Dhoni brought his own bowling machine in the training
Dhoni even brought his own bowling machine and practiced with the white ball even as his perplexed teammates sweated it out with the red ball ahead of their next Ranji Trophy fixture, and if the reports in Times of India are to be believed, the former Indian Captain might even turn out for his state team Jharkhand in the next round of the Ranji Trophy.
“Even we did not know that he was going to come and train with us. It was a pleasant surprise. He batted for a while and did the usual training routine,” a source close to the Jharkhand team was quoted as saying by the Times of India.
Ever since the news broke that Dhoni’s name has been dropped from the contract list, fear began to galore that this might be the end of the celebrated career of the former Indian skipper. However, missing out on the annual contract does not mean that MS Dhoni cannot play for India in the said period. The annual retainer is basically the amount a player gets for the number of games he plays between the designated period. Dhoni can still be included in the side on a pro-rata basis.
As for Jharkhand, they would be dearly hoping that MS Dhoni indeed turns up for them in the upcoming Ranji Trophy fixtures. Their next game is against Uttarakhand which starts in Ranchi on Sunday. In the five rounds thus far, they have won one and have lost two besides managing a draw in the other.
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