Bengaluru: Indian cricket fans turned emotional on Thursday (January 16) after the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the annual player contracts.

The biggest talking point was that of former captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s omission from the contract list. Dhoni has not played for India since the ICC World Cup 2019 in England in July 2019.

Also read: Full list of BCCI contracted players

Dhoni played in the World Cup semi-final against New Zealand as the Virat Kohli-led side suffered a heartbreaking defeat. In that knockout game, Dhoni was run out as India fell short of the target.

After that defeat, Dhoni took a break from cricket to serve in the Army. However, after that he was not picked for any series. BCCI selection panel chief MSK Prasad had said they had “moved on” from Dhoni.

When Dhoni himself was asked about his international future, he had said “wait till January”. Now, it is January but there is not sign of the 2011 World Cup winning captain. India are currently involved in a three-ODI series against Australia.

When the selectors announced the Indian T20I and ODI squads for the New Zealand tour, there too Dhoni’s name was missing. Now, the latest contract list from the BCCI has left the fans wondering whether it is the end of Dhoni era.

Fans took to the micro-blogging website Twitter to trend #ThankYouDhoni. #MSDhoni was also trending on Thursday (January 16) afternoon. However, there were other fans too who believe Dhoni would return to international cricket.

The BCCI seems to have sent out a strong signal to Dhoni. With him not available for India duty, the Indian cricket board, led by former captain Sourav Ganguly, has decided to not hand him any contract for the year 2019-2020.

The 38-year-old Dhoni made his international debut in 2004 in an ODI against Bangladesh. He is the only captain in history to have won all three ICC trophies, World Twenty20 (2007), World Cup (2017) and Championship Trophy (2013).

Here are some of the messages for Dhoni, on Twitter