India wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni started his new innings with the Territorial Army (TA) on Wednesday. Dhoni, who made himself unavailable for the West Indies series to serve his regiment, has formally joined his duty in Kashmir. Dhoni will be serving in the Kashmir valley as part of Victor Force till August 15.
“Dhoni’s 15-day duty period with his unit 106 TA Battalion (Para) begins today,” an army officer was quoted as saying by the New Indian Express.
The 38-year-old holds the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Territorial Army unit of the Parachute Regiment (106 Para TA battalion). The honour was accorded to him by the Indian Army in 2011. Dhoni was given this honour along with Abhinav Bindra and Deepak Rao.
In 2015, the Ranchi lad became a qualified paratrooper after having completed five parachute training jumps from Indian Army aircrafts in the Agra training camp.
Earlier, the veteran wicketkeeper-batsman had made himself unavailable for the West Indies tour where India will be playing three T20Is, three ODIs and two Test matches beginning August 3.
Ever since the culmination of World Cup in the UK where India reached the semi-finals, speculations have been rife about Dhoni’s retirement, but the team management has asked him to hang around as they groom Rishabh Pant with an eye on the 2020 World T20 in Australia.