Dhoni to skip Hazare despite Prasad claim
HYDERABAD: MS Dhoni will not play for Jharkhand in Sunday’s Vijay Hazare Trophy quarterfinal against Maharashtra, the team coach said, after chief selector MSK Prasad had confirmed his availability.
Jharkhand chief coach Rajiv Kumar told reporters in Bengaluru on Saturday: “Dhoni feels it would not be fair for him to join us at this stage, given that the team has done so well and reached the quarter-final in his absence. He does not want to upset the team balance.”
Dhoni, who aims to continue until the 2019 World Cup in England, has struggled for batting form, having played only 22 days of international cricket this year (15 ODIS, 7 T20s).
On Thursday, after announcing the ODI squad for the first two games against West Indies, Prasad told reporters: “Dhoni is playing the knock-outs. About (Ambati) Rayudu, I will check and get back.”
Jharkhand topped the group league stage with 32 points. Leftarm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem claimed a List A world record haul of 8/10.
The Dhoni issue comes after Prasad denied a lack of communication with players following media comments by opener Murali Vijay and middle-order batsman Karun Nair who were omitted from the Test squad.
The selection of pacer Shardul Thakur has also come under cloud after he broke down with a groin injury 10 deliveries into his Test debut against West Indies here.