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India vs South Africa: MS Dhoni to grace his presence in Ranchi on first day of the third Test

Dhoni's manager confirmed the news as well.

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MS Dhoni
MS Dhoni. (Photo Source: Twitter)

When cricket comes to Ranchi, how can the local hero MS Dhoni be far away? The 38-year-old former India cricketer is expected to be present at the JSCA International Stadium on the first day of the third and final Test between India and South Africa starting Saturday.

Dhoni has not played any international game since the semi-final of the World Cup against New Zealand which India lost by 18 runs. He has skipped two series since then and is unlikely to play against Bangladesh who are touring India next.

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Dhoni’s manager Mihir Diwakar has confirmed the news of him visiting the stadium as well. “Mahi will definitely come and you will see him during the first day’s proceedings tomorrow. I was there with him in Mumbai and he will fly down tomorrow morning,” Diwakar, who was also Dhoni’s team-mate once, was quoted as saying by Times of India.

JSCA president Nafis Khan has personally invited the legendary cricketer and his family to be present on the occasion. “He is most welcome anytime,” Khan said. Diwakar, however, said that MS Dhoni is likely to come alone and also host the Indian team at his farmhouse on the outskirts of Ranchi.

MS Dhoni and his wife Sakshi had hosted the Indian cricketers when they were in the city to play an ODI against Australia in March. In that game, Dhoni handed out army caps to the players to don during the match as a symbol of solidarity with the personnel martyred in a suicide terror attack in Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir, in February.

MS Dhoni quit Test cricket in December 2014 in Australia

The ace wicket-keeper quit red-ball cricket in December 2014 when India were touring Australia. In 90 Tests played since 2005, MS Dhoni scored 4,876 runs at an average of 38. He has slammed six centuries in the format, including one double hundred. Till recently, Dhoni was also India’s most successful captain in Tests with 27 wins out of 60 matches and was bettered by his successor Virat Kohli. He has also effected 296 dismissals in Tests (256 catches and 38 stumpings).

As far as the ongoing third Test is concerned, India have won the toss and opted to bat first. The visitors, however, have got off to a great start. Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara are already back in pavilion. Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are battling it out in the middle.

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