India has already announced their 15-man squad for the home T20 series against South Africa next month. However, the exclusion of a certain someone has created an outrage among fans following the announcement.
India’s World Cup-winning captain and legendary gloveman have yet missed out on another series post the world cup. It is a well-known fact that Dhoni himself asked to be rested after the world cup. Many expected him to make a return for the series following it though. However, that was not meant to be and yet another series will go by without the presence of Dhoni in the team.
MSK Prasad, the Chairman of the selection committee has now explained the reason behind the exclusion of MS Dhoni from the T20I series against South Africa.
“Yes he was unavailable for selection,” MSK Prasad told India Today on being asked about Dhoni’s availability; Putting to rest once and for all the doubts over whether he was dropped or not.
This means that young Rishab Pant now has another series to shine and firmly establish himself as MS Dhoni’s long term successor in the shorter formats after having done so in test matches.
When will MS Dhoni be back?
Dhoni’s self-imposed break should likely end in time for India’s next assignment against Bangladesh in the month of November. But it doesn’t seem like Prasad will sweat much over his absence. It looks like India’s former skipper is not in the scheme of things of the selectors.
“This selection committee is clear on one front. They will never ask any questions to Dhoni with regards to retirement as that’s not their domain. But till they are in charge, they reserve the right to select the squad. As far as they are concerned, Rishabh Pant is now India’s first-choice keeper across formats,” a senior BCCI official told PTI.
It seems that MSK Prasad and his committee want to ensure that they do not tarnish MS DHoni’s legacy. However, they are also keen on building a plan of succession for the future with an eye on the two upcoming world cups; Possibly on the next selection panel too, the one to take charge of the team after the next BCCI elections.