MS Dhoni has been omitted by the BCCI from a 27-member list of central contract. (Reuters Photo)
- Harbhajan conceded that he was not surprised after seeing MS Dhoni's omission from BCCI's central contract
- Harbhajan also feels Dhoni is unlikely to play for India again even if he has a fabulous IPL season
- MS Dhoni has been left out of the BCCI's Annual Contracts List
Veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh conceded that he was not surprised after seeing MS Dhoni's omission from BCCI's central contract. Harbhajan also feels Mahendra Singh Dhoni is unlikely to play for India again even if he has a fabulous IPL season for Chennai Super Kings.
MS Dhoni was left out of the BCCI's central contracts list for players. Dhoni has been on a self-imposed sabbatical from the game following India's ouster from the Cricket World Cup 2019 at the semi-final stage.
While rumors about his uncertain future and possible retirement continue to do the rounds every now and then, there is yet to be an official confirmation from Dhoni or the BCCI regarding the legendary cricketer's future in the sport.
"Not surprised. I knew this was on the cards because Dhoni did not show any interest in playing matches after the World Cup. I think the World Cup semi-final was his last game. Earlier, MS Dhoni had told his friends that whatever happens in the World Cup, India's last game in the tournament will be his last international match. I am not surprised by seeing MS Dhoni's omission from BCCI's central contract. I think MS Dhoni has made his mind that he won't play for India again," Harbhajan Singh told Sports Tak.
India coach Ravi Shastri had said a call on MS Dhoni would be taken after the Indian Premier League where Dhoni will lead Chennai Super Kings. However, Harbhajan said if Dhoni had an excellent time in the IPL, his selection will depend on Rishabh Pant's form and his own willingness to play.
"Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli said that it would depend on MS Dhoni's performance in the Indian Premier League if we can be picked again but I think it depends on how Rishabh Pant's form would be at that particular time and if Dhoni wants to play for India again or not."
"I have no doubt he will have a great IPL. As far as I know, he has made up his mind. If he has a good IPL, he will still make himself unavailable. I don't see him making a comeback. Knowing him, he has played his last game for India during the World Cup. The team has also moved forward with the likes of Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson."
"Even if Dhoni is selected for the T20 World Cup after IPL, there will be a 4-5 month gap till the tournament starts. In that time where will Dhoni play and practice? So I don't think MS Dhoni wants to see him again in the blue jersey. BCCI have also proved today they are also looking forward."
Dropped from BCCI's central contracts list, former India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni began practicing with the Jharkhand Ranji Trophy squad on Thursday amid fresh speculation on his future.