The news about Mahendra Singh Dhoni desiring a stint of training with the Indian Army has become old. As per a press release issued by the Army, MSD is slated to be with his battalion from July 31 to August 15 in Kashmir for the training camp. However, the former India captain was present and seen at the Mumbai Airport on Saturday, July 27, leading to speculation about whether he would actually be going through with this commitment.
It was due to this engagement that Dhoni had opted out of India's tour to West Indies which begins in early August. The 2011 World Cup-winning captain had asked for permission to be away from the team for two months. It can be argued that he deserved a break anyway after having been involved in cricket almost continuously since the beginning of IPL. Still, any change of plans is interesting to watch out for.
It is worth remembering that since the end of the World Cup, speculation regarding the future of MSD has been fervent. Many believe that the wicketkeeper-batsman is no longer going to be seen on the cricket field. Some reports suggests that he has refused to announce his retirement despite signals being given by the selectors.
Amidst all these rumours and stories, one thing that was certain was Dhoni's plan to train with the Army unit of which he is an honorary member. The 38-year old is a Lieutenant Colonel with the Territorial Army's Parachute Regiment. It can be recalled here that it was due to his involvement with the Army that he was wearing the 'Balidaan' insignia on his gloves that had to be removed after objections were raised to the ICC.
While training with the Army isn't necessarily the best way of getting a rest, perhaps the iconic former skipper of Men in Blue felt it is through this type of training that he can best get away from the mental strain that he must have endured, first in the IPL and then in the World Cup.
Maybe, the former captain is merely making a small detour through Mumbai and would get to Kashmir in time. Let's see what happens.