India-Pakistan is not just a series, but a lot more than that: Dhoni has his say on cricket's fiercest rivalry
What's the story?
Amidst all of the hullabaloo surrounding the possibility of future India-Pakistan series, former Indian skipper MS Dhoni has weighed in on the discussion.
During an interaction with Kashmir's budding cricketers, according to NBT Hindi News, Dhoni said, "India-Pakistan is not just a series, but a lot more than that. Only the government can decide whether we play Pakistan in the future or not."
In case you didn't know...
India and Pakistan haven't featured in a bilateral series since 2013 due to political tensions that exist between the two nations. This has resulted in their showdowns being restricted to ICC events.
The last Test played between the two nations goes way back to 2007/08. Many efforts have been made to restore cricketing ties, however, they have all not proven to be fruitful. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the PCB in 2014, which was a step in the right direction, but India backed out following the Pathankot terror attacks in 2015.
The heart of the matter
Dhoni, who holds the ranks of a Lieutenant Colonel, had flown to Kashmir to interact with the cricketers of the Uri sector of the Baramulla district, offering them tips to improve their game. He had also visited the Army Public School earlier and was seen speaking with the students.
The possibility of India featuring against Pakistan as a part of their Future Tours Programme will be discussed in December during a Special General Meeting in New Delhi but it is unlikely that a positive decision will be made.
As for Dhoni himself, he will next be seen in India colours when they host Sri Lanka in a limited-overs series starting December 10.
India-Pakistan encounters have always been riveting and fans of both sides have waited years to see their favourite sides square off. However, whilst there exist tensions between the two nations, the series will never be given a green light. Even if the BCCI does give the series its nod of approval, the ultimate decision lies with the government.