MS Dhoni offered to sleep on the floor when Hardik Pandya had no rooms in NZ post suspension


Hardik Pandya was going through his worst time as an India cricketer back in the 2018-19 winter when he faced a disciplinary suspension from BCCI due to inappropriate remarks made on a television chat show and was forced to miss the entire tour of Australia. 

And to pile on the cricketer’s misery, he had no hotel room available in New Zealand initially when his ban was revoked and he was sent for the limited-overs series that followed. 

It is then, Hardik has revealed, MS Dhoni came to his rescue and offered him space and a bed inside his own room. Dhoni, in fact, went to the extent of telling him that he can sleep on his bed while the legend himself sleeps on the floor. 

“When I was picked for the New Zealand series [in January 2019, after the suspension was revoked], initially there were no hotel rooms [for Pandya in New Zealand]. But then I get a call, saying, “You just come. MS has told us, ‘I don’t sleep on the bed [in any case]. He will sleep on my bed and I will sleep on the floor’,” Hardik told ESPNcricinfo in an interview for the ‘Cricket Monthly’. 

Also Read: Hardik Pandya: I Don’t Like When People Call MS Dhoni ‘Cool’

Hardik Pandya MS Dhoni

Hardik Pandya recalled how MS Dhoni helped him get back on his feet.

Mahi bhai is a darling, a life coach: Hardik Pandya 

Further talking about the special bond he shares with his first India captain, Hardik Pandya said Dhoni “understood me” from the beginning of his career. The cricketer added, “Mahi bhai is a darling” and a “life coach” who has made him a better person and cricketer through important one-on-one conversations whenever he has needed the man. 

“Mahi bhai is a darling. There are a lot of things I am allowed [with him], which no one else is. We connect well. Maybe he likes the fact that I never treat him like MS Dhoni. And he understands where I come from. He is like, Okay, yeh kar raha hai toh kuch soch ke kar raha hai [If Hardik is doing something, it’s only after he has considered it] type,” Hardik said. 

“In a certain way, yes (he is a life coach). We have lovely conversations. As I said, only Mahi can make me understand certain things. Sometimes if I get strong-headed and I go into that zone and I believe some things, I have to call him and say, “Yeh soch rahan hoon, kya chal raha hai, batao.” [This is on my mind. What do you think?] Then he will explain. So, yes, in a lot of ways he is a life coach,” he added. 

Hardik Pandya’s India career began when Dhoni was entering his final year of limited-overs captaincy for India. The all-rounder played his first 4 ODIs and 16 T20Is, including the 2016 edition of the T20 World Cup, under the great’s leadership and got just the right kind of platform to build his promising career from. 

A cricket writer by heart and profession. Currently at work for CricXtasy. Previously with Circle of Cricket. You can find him on Twitter @crickashish217