Opinion

This is why MS Dhoni wasn’t inducted to the ICC Hall of Fame this year

Recently the world split into two factions when MS Dhoni was not inducted to the ICC Hall of Fame while Zaheer Abbas stole the limelight. Dhoni created monumental ripples in the ocean of cricket when he bade adieu to international colours on the very night of Indian’s 74th Independence Day. Suresh Raina, the best buddy of Mahi also walked the same path in a matter of a few minutes.
There were questions pertaining to Dhoni’s career before he made the hefty call as there was a lot of uncertainty which clouded the matter. With Dhoni’s last ODI match against New Zealand, people believed that it was the end of the most embellished Indian skipper.

However, Dhoni didn’t say anything concrete and left his fans guessing at everything they could, especially piecing the puzzle together. A more or less popular conclusion was inferred that stated that Dhoni will play the 2020 T-20 World Cup and then call it a day. Given Mahi’s age, that seemed like a pretty plausible plan.
Unfortunately, destiny had something else in store for him. With the entire world being consumed by the wildly-raging pandemic, all sporting events came to an indefinite halt and the ICC decided to postpone the World Cup until further notice. Things got chaotic and the haze of clouds that got denser with uncertainty forced Dhoni into his retirement.
Dhoni has won several honours for himself and the nation that saw him being labelled as the best captain of the Indian cricket team. Atop everything though, the most that Dhoni earned was the love of his fans which placed him on a pedestal to that of a cricketing God.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – JUNE 5 : Harsha Bhogle, a cricket commentator from India presents before the ICC Cricket World Cup Group Match between South Africa and India at the Hampshire Bowl on June 5, 2019 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Popperfoto via Getty Images)
Just after the retirement of Dhoni, ICC inducted Jacques Kallis, Lisa Sthalekar and Zaheer Abbas to the prestigious Hall of Fame. This irked the Indians and Dhoni fans by a good deal stating that it wasn’t a right move to omit Dhoni from the Hall of Fame when the captain has bent his back several times to win unprecedented laurels for the nation.
The question is that whether it was intentional on ICC’s part or was it something greater called rules that bound ICC?
The ICC rule clearly states that in order for someone to get inducted into the Hall of Fame, that person must have crossed five years after his/her retirement. That is the exact same reason that saw Anil Kumble and Rahul Dravid making the cut earlier than the God, Sachin Tendulkar. The difference between Dravid’s retirement and induction in the Hall of Fame was 6 years as the Wall bade adieu to the sport in 2012.

Sachin Tendulkar made it to the prestigious club in 2019, which is exactly six years after his farewell in 2013. Going by this rule, Dhoni’s turn will take a good deal of time to arrive with the exact year being 2025.
However, the Indian contenders who are heavily tipped to be in the queue of this titanic honour are Virender Sehwag and Zaheer Khan, whose farewell came in 2015. To make the contest more interesting, Mahela Jayawardene, Michael Clarke, Graeme Smith and Kumara Sangakkara, they all become eligible in the next year for a place in the hall of the immortals.

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