Reports: MS Dhoni could play for Jharkhand in Vijay Hazare Trophy
With the ODI series against West Indies less than two weeks away, MS Dhoni could be in line for a return to List-A cricket with Jharkhand during the knockout stages of the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy. After being part of the victorious Indian side at the Asia Cup, Dhoni might be back playing for Jharkhand for the first time in the tournament since 2017 where he featured in all six games according to a report in the Mumbai Mirror.
Jharkhand, who are currently on top of Elite Group C, will play their final group game against Services on October 11 and the knockout stages will begin on October 14, just a week ahead of the Windies ODI series. With a four-point lead over second-placed Haryana as things stand, Jharkhand are all but assured of a spot in the quarter-final but will face Services to assure themselves of not just a spot in the knockout stages but also finish top of the group.
After the Asia Cup final on September 28, Dhoni decided against playing in the group stage for Jharkhand and has missed three games, against Bengal on October 1, against Tripura on October 5 and Gujarat on October 7. Although he is likely to miss the game against Services as well on October 11, according to reports in the Mumbai Mirror, he might feature in the knockout stages.
Although he hasn't played this season, Jharkhand Cricket Association secretary Debasish Chakraborty said: “Dhoni has been training with the team since September and has been involved in all aspects of the game. He has been playing the role of mentor. It hardly matters if a player of his stature takes part in the Vijay Hazare Trophy.”
Dhoni has only played 15 ODIs and 7 T20Is this year and struggled to get going in the Asia Cup and a few List-A matches under his belt should do him no harm at all, especially with a series against Windies and a tour of Australia coming up next month.