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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Ranji Trophy: 'Mentor' Dhoni set to boost Jharkhand in semis

Ranji Trophy: 'Mentor' Dhoni set to boost Jharkhand in semis

December 30, 2016 18:45 IST

'He should be there in Nagpur in all probability. He wants to be there. Interactions with him has always been helpful for the boys.'

Mahendra Singh DhoniMahendra Singh Dhoni, who is the unofficial mentor to the Jharkhand cricket team, is set to be part of his state side as they take on Gujarat in its first ever Ranji Trophy semi-final, starting in Nagpur, on Sunday.

Dhoni doesn't play the longer version of the game ever since retiring from Tests but often practices with the Jharkhand players during the domestic first class season.

"He should be there in Nagpur in all probability. He wants to be there. Interactions with him has always been helpful for the boys," a source close to the team management said on Friday.

But with the Indian team for the home ODI and T20 series against England expected to be picked in the first week of January, Dhoni might not be in Nagpur for the entire duration of the game.

The India limited-overs captain has taken out time for his state team when not on national duty in the last couple of seasons.

He dropped in at the nets ahead of Jharkhand's Ranji Trophy opener against Maharashtra at the Karnail Singh Stadium in New Delhi in October.

The 35-year-old was also part of the pre-season camp held at the international cricket stadium in Ranchi. He spent time with the team in Chennai too in August on the sidelines of the Buchi Babu Invitational Tournament.

Besides providing a morale boost to the players, Dhoni will get crucial net sessions under his belt ahead of international assignments. It has been all the more helpful this season with India having a Test-heavy season at home.

With the Vijay Hazare Trophy starting only in February, Dhoni won't get a competitive game before the England series starting on January 15.

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