Devbrat Patnaik

Captain Cool Mahendra Singh Dhoni may not have made many appearances in Odisha, but each of his visits has been memorable for his fans back here. Who can forget the 256-run thrilling partnership between MSD and Yuvraj Singh in the second ODI against England at Cuttack’s Barabati Stadium in 2017? This and many more memories are still afresh.

Recently, a post mentioning about former team India skipper MS Dhoni’s visit to Bhadrak in March 2002 is going viral. While the authenticity is still not confirmed, it is assumed this probably could be during his stint with the Railways at Kharagpur.

The post shared by Mahi’s big fan Dipti Ranjan, a native of Bhadrak, has a picture of MS Dhoni in whites and the list of players from Sersa in Kharagpur who had come along with Dhoni to play in Odisha’s Bhadrak.

Leading the pack was Koushik Chakraborty. Prasanta Singha Roy, MS Dhoni, Satya Prakash, Robin Kumar, Aniket Das, Ashes Dey, Sanjoy Choubey, Jayesh Shukla, Deepak Singh, Deepak Singh, Surajit Mitra, Suman Nag, Goutam Choudhury, N Srinivas Rao were included in the 14-member squad. The picture of a young Dhoni perhaps in his sublime form then is pure gold.

Did you know that Dhoni academy had also opened a coaching clinic in Cuttack in 2019? In May that year, the MS Dhoni Cricket Academy had launched India's first Cricket Coaching Clinic in more than 20 different cities in India. In the Silver City Cuttack, MSDCA organised its cricket coaching clinic at Nimpur Sports Club ground for a period of seven days from May 25 to May 31. The main objective of this initiative was to bring structured cricket coaching and provide a platform to all the aspiring cricketers in the country.