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MS Dhoni can't be ignored if fit, KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant can still learn from his experience: Wasim Jaffer

New Delhi, March 18: Former India cricketer and domestic stalwart Wasim Jaffer believes former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni still has it in him to be a part of the national side if he keeps fit.

MS Dhoni has been out of cricket action since July 2019, precisely since Team India's semi-final exit from the ICC Cricket World Cup in England.

Dhoni's fans, as well as his critics, have been eagerly waiting for his return on the cricket pitch and many believed that his form in the upcoming season of Indian Premier League (IPL) will be key to his return to Team India.

Jaffer - who recently announced retirement from all forms of cricket after a 24-year-old first-class career during which he amassed close to 20000 runs - also believes young Rishabh Pant and KL Rahul still be a part of the Playing XI with Dhoni for they have still a lot to learn from the Ranchi cricketer.

"If Dhoni is fit and in the form, I think we can't look beyond him as he'll be an asset behind the stumps and also lower down the order. It'll take the pressure of keeping off Rahul and India can play Pant as a batsman too if they want a lefty," Jaffer tweeted on Tuesday (March 18).

Jaffer has played only two ODIs but scored 1944 runs in 31 Tests for India and holds the record for the second-highest individual score by an Indian in the West Indies.

The former Indian skipper's chance to make it to the squad for the T20 WC does not necessarily hinge upon the IPL or its cancellation. If Dhoni makes himself available and the selectors feel his experience will count at the big stage, then the Jharkhand man can make it to the squad. But the IPL would have provided him with a wonderful stage to play highly competitive cricket and fall into the groove.

Dhoni had also shown some good touch at the pre-season nets of Chennai Super Kings before the IPL teams decided to cancel the nets in the wake of COVID-19.

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Story first published: Wednesday, March 18, 2020, 19:13 [IST]
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