For the very first time since July, MS Dhoni returned to practice as Jharkhand coach Rajiv Kumar has revealed that he joined the team in Ranchi ahead of their Ranji Trophy clash against Uttarakhand. Dhoni had last played for India in July and speculation about is future is at an all-time high.
Dhoni has kept his fans at bay regarding his comeback, the way the swashbuckling keeper kept it when he was behind the stumps, tight. For the very first time, Dhoni was seen with the bat in hand after the world cup semi-final loss against New Zealand. The man from Jharkhand batted with enormous ease and didn’t look rusty according to Jharkhand coach Rajiv Kumar, who saw him bat at Jharkhand Ranji nets.
"I will be honest... I thought there will be a bit of rustiness as Dhoni has not trained for quite some time. The last time we had spoken, he said that he would start in Jan and here we go. He is a man of his words and it came as no surprise that he was out there training with the guys just like any other Jharkhand player. But what surprised me most was how he middled almost every ball, be it in the pacer's net. He even took throwdowns just like a player going through the batting drills does," Kumar said, reported Times of India.
The former skipper has been in the news more for his off-field exploits and has been making headlines for his acts away from the 22 yards. The gloveman decided to go to Kashmir right after the World Cup which few anticipated. But the main thing happened when he made himself unavailable for the home series against South Africa which raised a plethora of eyebrows but again that is Dhoni, the enigma he carries.
Meanwhile, the Jharkhand Ranji Team is practising at their home ground to face bottom-ranked Uttarakhand on January 22. But Ranjiv Kumar is quite confident that Dhoni’s preparations won’t be halted due to that.
"I haven’t had any talks with his regards to the national team and him donning that India jersey again. But, his preparations for the next edition of the IPL has begun and while the senior team will be busy playing the Ranji Trophy game from Sunday, Dhoni will continue training till the time he is in Ranchi.”
The biggest atom bomb fell when Dhoni was omitted from the men’s central contract for the period between Oct 2019 and Sep 2020, many thought it's all over when it comes to Dhoni making it to the T20 World Cup 2020 in Australia.
But the Indian coach Ravi Shastri showed optimism regarding Dhoni’s future and has kept fans alive by saying, "It all depends on when he starts playing and how he is playing during the IPL. Also what are the other people doing with the wicket-keeping gloves or what is the form of those players as opposed to Dhoni's form? The IPL becomes a massive tournament because that could be the last event after which more or less your 15 will be decided."