Hanuma Vihari ditches Madhya Pradesh for second year in a row, denies making team switch

Published - 20 Jun 2024, 08:05 PM

Hanuma Vihari
Hanuma Vihari (Credits: X)

Hanuma Vihari seems to be having a change of heart as he has decided against playing for Madhya Pradesh in the forthcoming domestic season. 

Earlier this year, the out-of-favor India batter had sensationally announced that he would never represent Andhra again as he alleged political interference in the team selection. Hanuma Vihari made the allegations in February after Andhra's campaign in the Ranji Trophy came to an end with a defeat against Madhya Pradesh.

In an Instagram post, Hanuma Vihari had also alleged that he was forced to step down as the captain after the team's first game of the season against Bengal. Vihari claimed that he lost his captaincy after shouting at the 17th player of the squad as the latter's father was a politician. He also stated that he felt humiliated and embarrassed after the incident before announcing that he would never play for Andhra again.

Recently, he also got his no objection certificate (NOC) from the Andhra Cricket Association to represent any other team in the domestic circuit. Before getting the NOC, the former Andhra captain stated that he had been asking for the NOC for the past two months but did not receive it until this month.

"I have been asking for NOC for two months, mailed them four times. Didn't give my NOC. Now things have turned, they have issued my NOC immediately," wrote Hanuma Vihari on X.

Hanuma Vihari turns down Madhya Pradesh again:

After Hanuma Vihari received the NOC, it was expected that he would finally join Madhya Pradesh. However, their head coach Chandrakant Pandit has confirmed that the middle-order batsman has decided against joining the team. Vihari has already informed Pandit about his decision.

"He has backed out. I got a message this morning that he will not be playing for us. It’s unfortunate but we can’t help it," Pandit was quoted as saying by CricketNext.

The news outlet further claimed that the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association (MPCA) was waiting for Vihari to submit the NOC so that they could complete all the paperwork. However, the NOC never arrived before the batsman confirmed that he would not join the team. Pandit tried to contact the batter for the last one week but Vihari did not respond and finally called back on Wednesday (June 19).

"I have been trying to speak to him for the last 5-6 days but wasn’t able to talk. I then dropped him a message and he called back last evening and said he would update me. This morning I got a message from him that he will not be able to play for us," added Pandit.

Vihari has turned down Madhya Pradesh for the second year in a row and the MPCA officials are reportedly unhappy with the batsman. The batter had himself reached out to Pandit after the rift with Andhra Cricket Association but has decided against joining the team now.

Interestingly, Vihari's post about getting the NOC after a long delay is not available on his timeline anymore. There is a possibility that he might decide to stay with the Andhra team after the recent political development in the state. 

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Hanuma Vihari Chandrakant Pandit Madhya Pradesh Andhra Andhra Pradesh Cricket Association (ACA) Andhra Pradesh