Monday, Aug 15, 2022
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Mahi Dhoni

I received this strange call. “We have been deputed by the PMO to discuss something very confidential...

Mahi Dhoni Illustration by Sorit

The other day (during the rest phase between the first two ODIs), I received this strange call. “We have been deputed by the PMO to discuss something very confidential. Can you meet us tomorrow morning at 10 at the Leisure Inn Hotel. It’s near Hyde Park. Ask for Jaishree Bhaicut. Also, wear a wig and a false beard so that no one recognises you,” a voice said. I confirmed I would be there. Later I asked Munaf (Patel) to organise the stuff for my disguise. He must have thought I had either gone kinky or was trying to avoid the pesky Indian media.

Anyway, when I reached the Leisure Inn, I was welcomed by a portly gentleman (Mr Bhaicut) who introduced me to a mean-looking fellow—Dravid Floyd. Well, the first thought that struck me was that their names had a false ring to them. (Later, it was revealed by a friend in the PMO that they had changed their names and travelled on false passports). Bhaicut explained the purpose of their London visit. “Mr Dhoni, we work for the Defence Research & Development Organisation and we have been instructed by the PM’s office to sort out a problem the Indian team currently faces.” I wondered whether he was referring to our poor form. “No,” said Floyd, “form is something you and the coach have to sort out. But what the entire nation is worried about is the spate of injuries that has been plaguing the team. Eight members down with some problem or the other is just not on.”

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