Mahendra Singh Dhoni is not only one of the best finishers in world cricket, he is a destructive top-order batsman too who should bat higher up, feels former India captain and BCCI President Sourav Ganguly. Dhoni, regarded as one of India’s finest leaders, turned 39 on Tuesday. It was under Ganguly that the Ranchi wicketkeeper batsman made his debut and went on to win all ICC trophies for India, the only captain to do so.
During a chat with India Test opener Mayank Agarwal which was shared by BCCI with hashtag #DadaOpensWithMayank, Agarwal asked him: “Your word got Mahi bhai picked in the Indian team and the rest is history. Is that a myth or a reality?”
“That’s true but that’s my job isn’t it. That’s every captain’s job…pick the best and make the best team possible,” Ganguly replied.
“You go by your instincts. You go by the faith of that player that he will deliver for you.
“I’m happy that Indian cricket got Mahendra Singh Dhoni because he is unbelievable.”
“One of the great finishers in the world, said Agarwal.
“One of the great players in world cricket. Not just a finisher, I think everyone talks about the way he finishes lower down the order…he batted at No. 3 when I was captain. He got 140 against Pakistan in Vizag..I always believe that he should bat up the order because he is so destructive,” Ganguly opined.
“You know the best player in the shorter format has the ability to hit boundaries at will. You look over a period of time, the history of one-day cricket…the best players can find the fence under pressure consistently and M.S. Dhoni was one of them,” he added.
Cricket fraternity thronged social media to extend birthday wishes for Dhoni who led India to an ICC 50-over World Cup, T20 World Cup and Champions Trophy in 2013. He even led India to the number one ranking in both Test and ODI formats.
Dhoni has been on a sabbatical ever since the semi-finals of the 2019 World Cup where India lost to New Zealand. It’s been almost a year that he has been away from the cricket field, yet conversations about his return or future retirement have never died out in the time since and he still remains one of the most talked about cricketers in the present era.
Dhoni has played 90 Tests, 350 ODIs and 98 T20Is for India, amassing over 17,000 international runs.
Speculations about his retirement from all forms of international cricket have been on ever since the 2019 World Cup. But Dhoni has still not made any such announcement. However, one thing is for certain, whenever he hangs his boots, it will be a day when the entire country will have tears in their eyes, just like when Sachin Tendulkar drew curtains on his 24-year-old long career in Mumbai.
K.L. Rahul wants Hardik’s son to become fast bowling all-rounder
India batsman K.L. Rahul has suggested that his teammate Hardik Pandya’s newborn son should become a fast bowling all-rounder like his father. Hardik’s brother and fellow all-rounder Krunal Pandya posted a boomerang of him holding the baby on his Instagram handle.
Rahul wrote in the comments: “Please tell him to become a fast bowling all rounder (folded hands)”.
Hardik and Natasa Stankovic, who had got engaged earlier this year, were blessed with a baby boy in late July.
Hardik announced the news in a Twitter post which read: “We are blessed with our baby boy.” It was posted with the picture of the baby’s hand. The delivery happened in Vadodara.
The duo had earlier announced in May that they were expecting a third member in their family. Fast forward a couple of months and they shared the good news with their fans and followers on social media, with the photo of their newly-born child.
Wishes poured in from all quarters for the couple with the likes of cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar, India’s Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane and others from the cricketing fraternity expressing their best wishes. “Many congratulations to the proud new parents! May the little one tiptoe with love into your hearts & stay there forever!” wrote Tendulkar on his Twitter handle.
National Hockey Camp: Skipper Manpreet, 4 others test COVID-19 positive
India’s men’s hockey captain Manpreet Singh, Surender Kumar, Jaskaran Singh, Varun Kumar and Krishan Pathak have tested COVID-19 positive after reporting to the national hockey camp in Sports Authority of India’s (SAI) National Centre of Excellence (NCOE) in Bengaluru along with the team.
All four tested negative in the rapid test, SAI said but Manpreet and Surender began to display some COVID-19 symptoms later because of which they along with other ten athletes who had travelled together were given the Quantitative RT-PCR test on Thursday.
SAI made it mandatory for all athletes, who reported back to the camp to take a rapid COVID-19 test upon arrival.
SAI also said that the test results have still not been handed over to them and it is the state government that has informed them about it. “Test results to the SAI authorities and few test results are still awaited,” it said.
All athletes, including Manpreet, who reported to camp were undergoing quarantine as per the Health Ministry Guidelines and as a precautionary measure were kept in isolation.
The quarantined athletes did not interact with other athletes who were already present at the camp. The SOP of the state government and of SAI is being followed strictly across the campus.
“I am self quarantined on the SAI campus and I am very happy with the way SAI authorities have handled the situation,” said Manpreet. “I am very happy that they made the testing of athletes mandatory. That proactive step helped in identifying the problem right in time. I am doing fine and hope to recover very soon.”
SAI had previously stated that the men’s and women’s national hockey camp were to restart at the Bengaluru campus on August 4.
It’s almost time: Jasprit Bumrah shares excitement ahead of IPL 13
Jasprit Bumrah cannot wait for the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) to kickstart, and the Indian ace pacer took to social media on Thursday to share his excitement.
The BCCI will be organising the IPL at three UAE venues — Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah — from September 19 to November 10 after it was postponed from March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s almost time,” said Bumrah in a tweet with a photo of him celebrating after taking a wicket in a Mumbai Indians jersey. Bumrah had played a crucial role in Mumbai’s record fourth title win in IPL last season.
On Wednesday, India’s Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane had also expressed his excitement for IPL 2020.
Rahane was traded by Rajasthan Royals to Delhi Capitals in November last year. “New beginnings for me in the @ipl this year. Looking forward to the season,” Rahane said in an Instagram post along with a photo of him batting.
Meanwhile, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided to suspend the partnership with title sponsors Vivo for IPL 13. This development came after the IPL Governing Council had on Sunday decided to retain the company as title sponsors.
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