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Vijay Hazare Trophy 2017: Sourav Ganguly formulates plans to help Bengal counter MS Dhoni ahead of semi-final

All teams consider MS Dhoni a major threat

MS Dhoni has played all the matches since the league stage for Jharkhand

What’s the story?

CAB President and former India captain Sourav Ganguly will be travelling to Delhi to help a young Bengal team formulate a strategy to counter a formidable Mahendra Singh Dhoni led Jharkhand team in the semi-final of the Vijay-Hazare Trophy.

“Sourav has already discussed a few plans on how to tackle the Dhoni threat with Manoj and Sairaj. No doubt Dhoni is a formidable player but it’s not impossible to get him out. Dada will be meeting the team in the evening today and will also be present at the ground tomorrow,” a Bengal team source told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

“This is a young Bengal team and they have learnt how to play according to the situation. MS Dhoni is a legend but, on the field, one can’t get intimidated by names” Dada said.

Meanwhile, the Bengal skipper emphasised on Jharkhand’s other big names as well.

“We have to stick to our plans and don’t forget they also have good players like Saurabh Tiwary, Ishan Kishan, Virat Singh. You cannot just concentrate on one player and have no plans for others,” Manoj Tiwary said.

Watch: MS Dhoni hands over captaincy to Sourav Ganguly in his last Test match

In case you didn’t know…

Manoj Tiwary led Bengal team beat Kedar Jadhav-led Maharashtra in a thrilling quarter-final in Delhi. In the other quarter-final, MS Dhoni led Jharkhand got the better off Vidarbha. The semi-final, which will feature two domestic giants, will not be televised live as Model Sports Complex in Palam does not have broadcast facilities.

The other semi-final saw Tamil Nadu breeze past Baroda and will face the winner of the aforementioned match.

The heart of the matter

Sourav Ganguly will be donning the mentor’s hat, when he meets skipper Manoj Tiwary and coach Sairaj Bahutule to discuss strategies against the Dhoni threat.

This Bengal team comprises of young and relatively unknown names. Apart from Manoj Tiwary, Ashoke Dinda and Pragyan Ojha, who have played against Dhoni in the IPL, others like Kanishk Seth,  Amir Gani and Sayan Ghosh have not played against the former Indian captain.

What’s next?

While the wicket at Palam is not expected to be a belter like Feroz Shah Kotla, toss will be a significant factor in the morning since the ground is open, it will trigger seam and swing movement. In tomorrow’s semi-final, both teams will play with an unchanged XI.

Author’s Take

The active involvement of Sourav Ganguly reflects on his persona and his interest in the game. It also speaks volumes about the ability of Dhoni and the fact that Ganguly identifies him as someone who can try and nullify the Ranchi-born’s effect on the game.

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