Temple For Cricketer

Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is to be worshipped as a god after fans announced they're building a temple devoted to him.

A white marble statue of the sports star will be the centrepiece of the temple when work starts next month in his home town of Ranchi, eastern India.

Relief carvings of the player in action will also look down on disciples as they pay homage to his success in restoring the country's cricketing reputation.

"Dhoni is God to cricket and we have decided to construct a temple. He will be worshipped like other gods are worshipped in temples," explained Jitendra Singh, president of Dhoni's fan club.

But Dhoni has doubts about being worshipped by his disciples: "I love my fans but this is actually a little over the top," he said.

Indian cricket historian and Oxford scholar Boria Mazumdar called the decision "extreme passion".

"To call it madness would be a simple way to dismiss it. But I think the act exemplifies what cricket means for India," he added.

Dhoni has helped India win the inaugural 20:20 World Cup in South Africa and a number of key home and away series against Australia and England.


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