The Hush Post| 13:18 pm|one-minute-read|
Former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has made himself “unavailable” for the Indian team’s tour of West Indies as speculations raged about his future. He announced this on Saturday.
An Honorary Lieutenant Colonel in the Parachute Regiment of the Territorial Army, it is learnt that Dhoni will be spending the better part of the next two months with his regiment.
A top BCCI official confirmed the development.
“Dhoni has made himself unavailable for the tour of West Indies as he will be spending two months with his paramilitary regiment,” the official told PTI.
38-year-old Dhoni has intimated his decision to the BCCI prior to the selection committee meeting on Sunday. With Dhoni out of the tour, it is learnt Rishabh Pant is expected to be the first wicketkeeper in all three formats while Wriddhiman Saha will be Pant’s understudy in the Tests.
Dhoni’s fortunes have dwindled since the 2015 World Cup. 2016 and 2018 were the worst years for him in terms of run-scoring – he aggregated just 278 runs from 10 innings in 2016 (average of 27.8) and 275 runs from 13 in 2018 (average of 25).
Although he bounced back and averaged 60.61 in 2017 and again has an average of 60 in 2019, it is his strike rate, which has been a huge cause of concern in the last 4 years. It hasn’t crossed 85 in any calendar year in this period and fell to a shocking 71.42 in 2018, according to a news report in News 18.