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‘Dhoni wasn't selected for Pakistan tour…Ganguly hadn’t seen him play': Ex-BCCI selector's revelation

‘Dhoni wasn't selected for Pakistan tour…Ganguly hadn’t seen him play': Ex-BCCI selector's revelation

MS Dhoni, the former captain of the Indian cricket team and a great wicketkeeper/batsman, hardly needs an introduction after his 15-year international career. Dhoni has won three ICC trophies as captain of the Indian cricket team and five Indian Premier League championships as captain of the Chennai Super Kings.

The Cricket World Cup 2019 semi-final between India and New Zealand was the final international encounter for the former Indian skipper.

3 things you need to know

In December of 2004, MS Dhoni made his debut for India's national team against Bangladesh.
Dhoni is regarded as one of cricket's all-time greats.
Dhoni captained Team India to their last ICC title in 2013.

Saba Karim talks about why MS Dhoni was left out of the 2004 Pakistan tour.
Saba Karim, who used to keep wickets and bat for the Indian cricket team, has seen MS Dhoni grow up very closely.

Before Dhoni played for India on the world stage for the first time, Karim was in charge of picking the Bihar Ranji team with the famous Indian captain. Karim talked about why Dhoni couldn't go on the 2004 Pakistan tour with the Indian cricket team. He did this on Jio Cinema.

Saba Karim said that Team India's captain at the time, Sourav Ganguly, wanted MS Dhoni to prove himself on the local circuit. This is why he didn't make the Indian team for the 2004 Pakistan trip. Karim told me:

I remember I was in Calcutta at the time, and Sourav Ganguly was the captain. I went to see him and told him about this keeper who should join the Indian team because he was playing so well and was such a safe keeper.

Sourav hadn't seen MS play before we went to Pakistan, so he wasn't chosen for that trip. But that was what he wanted.

Saba Karim also talked about his first time meeting MS Dhoni. He said that he was very pleased with his hitting, but that he had trouble moving his feet. Saba told me:

My story is really cool. When I met MS Dhoni for the first time, he was in his second year of playing in the Ranji Trophy. He played for Bihar before. I saw him bat and keep, and when he batted, he played big lofted shots to a spinner or a fast bowler, which we saw him do again and again in the future.

MS Dhoni's first match was against Bangladesh in December 2004. He was out for a "duck," and he didn't do well in the ODI series. But the former captain of India showed himself by making a hundred against Pakistan in Visakhapatnam in 2005.