MS Dhoni’s international comeback isn’t dependent on IPL, says former India opener Aakash Chopra.

India head coach Ravi Shastri and BCCI sources have maintained that Dhoni, who hasn’t played competitive cricket since the 2019 ODI World Cup, can make the cut for ICC T20 World Cup should he have a fruitful IPL.

Dhoni captains Chennai Super Kings in the cash-rich league but due to the coronavirus pandemic, it has been suspended till April 15 with uncertainty over whether it will be cancelled altogether this year.

Should IPL be called off, it will put a big question mark over Dhoni’s international future.

But Chopra disagrees.

“For a player like Dhoni, IPL was never going to be a yardstick,” Chopra said in a YouTube video. “If he had scored runs in the IPL, experts would have been like ‘select Dhoni’, ‘do this and do that’. MS Dhoni knows what he is doing, whether he wants to come back or not.”

He added, “IPL, I don’t think was a critical factor. If he wants to come back, he will make himself available, if the selectors decide to pick him, he will be picked automatically because you won’t get experience in supermarkets.”

With or without IPL, Chopra feels, Dhoni will make his comeback should India need his experience.

“Dhoni is a hugely experienced player. If India needs MS Dhoni, then with or without IPL, he will come back,” he said.

Earlier, after Sunil Joshi took over as the new BCCI chairman of selectors earlier this month, a board source had claimed that Dhoni will only be considered should he have a good IPL/

“He will be back in the reckoning only if he has a good IPL. And why only him? There are so many senior and young players who will play in the IPL. If they do well, they ought to be considered too. So, you could see some surprise inclusions,” a senior BCCI source had told PTI.