India cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni makes a debut in the hockey India league (HIL) with his franchise Ranchi Rays, which is co-owned by Sahara Adventure Sports Limited.
The announcement to this effect was made in Jharkhand capital on Saturday. The hockey India league started in 2012. The second edition was held in January 2014 and the third one is likely to start from January 22, 2015.
Ranchi Rays is being dubbed a new avatar of the last-time runners-up Ranchi Rhinos, who are out of the league this time, following a distrust between owners (Patel-PS Group and Uniexcel Group) and Hockey India (HI).
Talking to media persons, Dhoni said,“I am happy to own franchise of Ranchi team with the support of Sahara Pariwar. I wanted to see the growth of hockey from the grass root level. HIL is the biggest sports league. Last year it concluded with a grand success. So I decided to join it.”
He said he played hockey for his school-- once as a goalkeeper, but after that he was not selected for school hockey team.
Newly elected president of Hockey India Narendra Batra said that this was a great moment for HIL to have MS Dhoni on board as a franchise owner along with Sahara Pariwar.