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MS Dhoni likely to enter England ODI series without match practice

MS Dhoni India
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. (Photo by JEKESAI NJIKIZANA/AFP/Getty Images)

As per the recent news, team India limited-overs skipper MS Dhoni will most likely head into the England ODI series without any practice. This comes in contradiction with the recent protocol announced by the Indian team. Team India head coach Anil Kumble had mentioned that any player who makes a comeback to the national side must prove himself at the domestic arena first.

However, with no domestic limited overs matches scheduled before the England series, MS Dhoni might have to get into the national set up without match practice. The Indian skipper last featured in an ODI match during the India-New Zealand series. He led the team to a comfortable win in the Vizag ODI on October 29.

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Now, as things have unfolded, Dhoni will be seen in national colours after two and a half months. The 3 match ODI series against England kicks off with first ODI on January 15 at Pune. Last year, when Dhoni had to prepare for the Australia ODI series, he had opted to play in the Vijay Hazare series. This year, though, the Vijay Hazare series will start in mid-February. Thus, that leaves MS Dhoni with no option of having a match practice.

Dhoni retired from the longest format of the game and hence speculations of him playing the Ranji Trophy is only pointless. His domestic side, Jharkhand, has qualified for the knockouts of Ranji Trophy. However, MSD is yet to give a comment on whether he is keen on participating in the tournament.

The chairman of selectors MSK Prasad confirmed the same in his statement to the PTI. “We have no information as to whether Dhoni will be playing any Ranji Trophy game or not. In any case he has already retired from the longer format. The information we have is that he is doing his regular training with the Jharkhand team,” he quoted.

The Jharkhand State Cricket Association Secretary Rajesh Verma also said that there is no point why MS Dhoni should play Ranji after having retired from the longer format. “Dhoni does not play Test cricket anymore so the question of playing first-class cricket does not arise at all. He is a mentor of the Jharkhand team. He will play for Jharkhand in the Vijay Hazare Trophy,” he mentioned. Meanwhile, Dhoni might continue to practice with the Jharkhand team.

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