Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is set to host two Asia XI vs World XI T20 matches in March 2020. Bangladesh has organized this series to celebrate the 100th birthday of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The two T20 matches to be played on 18 & 21 March at Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka.
Will Indian and Pakistan players play together?
BCB had requested all the Asian nations to allow their players to play in the series. Bangladesh Board had requested BCCI to allow 7 Indian players for the same. The players which BCB want are MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Rohit Sharma. Meanwhile, BCCI confirmed that they will send 5 Indian players to Bangladesh. However, which players will go to Bangladesh this decision is on to BCCI President Sourav Ganguly.
Fans were excited to see Indian and Pakistani players playing for Asia XI. But it’s not going to happen as Pakistani players will not be available for the tournament as they will be busy playing Pakistan Super League in March. PCB chief Ehsan Mani told, “The Asia XI match is during the PSL. We did explore with BCB the possibility of the match date being changed but BCB were not able to do this for understandable reasons,”
Will MS Dhoni Play Asia XI vs World XI?
MS Dhoni is out the action since World Cup ouster. He didn’t appear in any competitive cricket this year after the world cup. He will also miss India’s limited-overs series against Sri Lanka and Australia in January. Dhoni was in BCB’s list of 7 Indian players they want to see in Asia XI. As no Rishabh Pant or Sanju Samson is in the list for Asia XI vs World XI series, BCCI could name MS Dhoni among 5 players which they will announce soon.
The first T20 match of the series is scheduled to play on 18th March and the same day India will play South Africa in an ODI match at Eden Gardens. So it’s most likely that Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma will miss the Asia XI vs World XI series. But Dhoni might play as he needs to appear in other competitive cricket before appearing in team India.
If Dhoni plays then it will not be the first time that he will play for Asia XI. In 2007, Dhoni was part of Asia XI for 3-ODI series against Africa XI. Dhoni had scored 174 runs including a century for Asian team which was led by Mahela Jayawardene. The team had shown complete dominance in the series as they had beaten Africa XI by 3-0.