The Brabourne Stadium was buzzing with chants of ‘Dhoni, Dhoni’, emotions running high among thousands of his fans who had descended at the venue to watch his farewell as skipper of an Indian side. (India A vs England XI score).
Mahendra Singh Dhoni fans were also granted their wish when he came out to provide a sparkling finish to the India A innings against England XI, smashing an unbeaten 68 off 40 deliveries.
Although there wasn’t any shortage of entertainment, a spectator jumped the 10-feet fencing, dodged the security cover in the North Stand fence, only to touch the feet of Dhoni, who was batting, to add more colour to the memorable evening for the fans.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni and partner Hardik Pandya were chatting in between overs. The well-built spectator was initially hesitant to come on to the pitch. It was only after Dhoni insisted that the person jumped over the wicket to touch the double World Cup-winning skipper’s feet.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni too obliged the fan and shook hands before the chasing security personnel arrived to escort him off the ground.
On Dhoni’s insistence, the intruder was not beaten up by the security guards, it is learnt. He was let off with a warning. Entry was free for the match.
The incident, however, forced the security on the boundary line to be strengthened.
Since Sachin Tendulkar retired in 2013, incidents of spectators running on to the ground have become rare.
Tuesday’s incident showed Dhoni’s popularity remains unmatched among Indian cricket lovers despite his giving up the limited-overs captaincy last week.