Vadodara: A high pressure series gets under way on Sunday, but Team India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni appeared to be pretty relaxed on the eve of the ODI here.
In fact, on an invitation from Group Captain Mannepali Baladitya, whod been the assistant manager on the 2006 tour of Pakistan, Dhoni and teammate Suresh Raina spent over two hours with the airmen of the 57 ASP unit and their families.
Baladitya, whod briefly also functioned as the Team India media manager, invited the duo on Friday and they went to the Makarpura Palace (which houses the unit) on Saturday afternoon.
Awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal earlier this month, Baladitya is the units commanding officer.
The airmen and their families had such a rare opportunity and they made the most of an informal interactive session with Dhoni and Raina, a delighted Baladitya told The Telegraph.
Its no surprise that most of the questions were directed at Dhoni. Some were of a personal nature, others specific to the seven-match contest against Australia.
When do you intend marrying? was one rather personal question lobbed at Dhoni. The captain, mind you, wasnt stumped. Nor did he give much away: Certainly not tomorrow!
Dhoni, who has already made it to the cockpit of a Mirage 2000 (in Gwalior), did tell the airmen that one of his desires was to fly in the Sukhoi 30 MKI, which has room for two pilots.
An immediate desire would, of course, surely be to commence the newest series on a winning note.