MS Dhoni has been out from any scene as India were busy playing test series against England and the legendary skipper retired from Test cricket a long ago.
India’s next limited overs schedule is against England and Dhoni had to have match practice before that. So, he has kept himself busy mentoring and playing cricket for Jharkhand’s Ranji team. The 34-year-old has been with the Jharkhand team for quite a while and even played practice games with the boys ahead of the season.
It’s a great experience for all the players of Jharkhand’s team as having this monster full of experiences in Ranji team is more than ordinary. Meanwhile, chasing down a fourth-innings target of 175 runs, Jharkhand defeated Haryana, on December 26 by five wickets and booked a ticket to semi-finals in the Ranji Trophy.
India’s u-19 team’s captain, Ishan has been fantastic throughout the season and score 700 runs already. He told about Dhoni, “Dhoni (bhai) saw me at the nets and walked up to me and said that I needed to curtail my attacking instincts to begin with. He believed that to play a long innings I needed to be a little more compact and I did just that.”
He added, “I got time to rework my stance and train with my new stance during the camp ahead of the season and I realised that I was feeling a lot better at the crease. I have maintained that stance since and I have seen that it has enhanced my batting.”
Another one in the team, Nadeem said, “It always helps when you have someone like Dhoni (bhai) to help you. There is no questioning his tactical acumen and I still remember that going into the game against Maharashtra, the wicket wore a slightly greener look. So he came up to me and said that I should initially look to restrict the batsmen and use variations only after I have tied them down. The move worked wonders and here I am, leading the wicket-takers’ tally.”
Meanwhile, Jharkhand’s coach Rajiv Kumar said, “It was really a good decision to involve Dhoni as the mentor of the side. Dhoni has been with the Jharkhand team for quite a while. As you all know, he even practices with the team and was in the team’s dressing room for first two matches of the season. With a wealth of experience, Dhoni’s presence as a mentor was a great move.”
Kumar lastly said, “He counselled the team how to handle pressure, and he is a perfect role model for the team. We wanted him to play the four-day games, but he said that he had retired from Test cricket and would be available for ODIs and T20s.”