The bond between M S Dhoni and Karachi-born Mohammad Bashir aka ‘Chacha Chicago’ blossomed throughout the 2011 World Cup semifinal between India and Pakistan and it has solely grown stronger since then.
Such is the bond that Bashir has flown in to Manchester from Chicago (roughly 6000 kms) for Sunday’s high-octane Indo-Pak contest with out a match ticket. He is aware of that Dhoni will guarantee that he’s it on the Outdated Trafford when the primary ball is bowled.
“I arrived right here yesterday and noticed that persons are able to pay as a lot as 800-900 kilos for a ticket. A return ticket from Chicago prices the identical. Because of Dhoni, I don’t need to battle for a match ticket,” the 63-year-old, who owns a restaurant in Chicago and is an American passport holder, informed PTI.
The connection goes again to 2011. Bashir was stunned by Dhoni’s benevolence when India’s World Cup-winning captain went out of his solution to organize a ticket for him for the marquee conflict in Mohali, a showdown for which most followers would pay an arm and a leg to observe in individual.
Eight years later, the heartwarming story of Bashir and Dhoni continues. It’s not a shock anymore that Bashir helps Dhoni’s staff over the nation of his delivery every time the 2 sides conflict.
Dhoni may not be simply accessible for even his teammates at occasions however has by no means dissatisfied Bashir.
“I don’t name him as he’s so busy. I communicate solely by means of textual content messages. Lengthy earlier than I got here right here, Dhoni assured me of the ticket. He is a superb human being. I can’t consider anybody else doing what he has performed for me since that 2011 sport in Mohali.
“Think about I get the ticket without spending a dime when most would pay a fortune for it. I’ve obtained a shock reward for him this time and I hope to offer it to him later right now,” stated Bashir.
After arriving in Manchester, he checked into the Pakistan’s staff resort the place he met many of the squad members together with captain Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Amir and Hassan Ali.
One in every of his selfies was with Shoaib Malik and Indian tennis star spouse Sania Mirza, an Indo-Pak union identical to him and his spouse. He checks into the Indian staff resort in a while Friday.
His love for his homeland is comprehensible however the purpose for his affinity in the direction of India is his Hyderbadi spouse, moreover Dhoni after all. His match-day uniform has each India and Pakistan colors and Bashir calls himself an envoy of peace.
Whereas watching Indo-Pak video games all-around the World, Bashir has made lifelong Indian associates and one them is the well-known superfan Sudhir, who primarily depends on funding from cricketers to assist the staff from stands. In reality, each are staying collectively in Manchester.
“Sudhir abhi apni physique pe tri-colour paint karwane gaya hain (Sudhir has gone outdoors to get the Indian tri-colour painted on his physique).
“I e book the room and we keep collectively. Because of allah, I’m doing okay (financially) and that’s the least I can do for a good friend. I simply gifted Sudhir a cellphone and it made him actually joyful. These are the little issues in life that provide you with happiness.”
Bashir, who has overcome three coronary heart assaults, carries as many 12 medicines when he’s travelling. Earlier than coming to the UK, he was in Saudi Arabia together with his grandson throughout the holy month of Ramadan.
“It’s not straightforward with my medical situation. Ab toh aisa lagta hain jab tak cricket chal rahi tab tak saasen chal rahi hain (Could also be I’m alive just for cricket),” Bashir added.
No prizes for guessing that he’s backing India to keep up their unbeaten run over Pakistan on Sunday.