Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni would be seen promoting his second love soccer on STAR Sports after being roped in as the brand ambassador of the upcoming Barclays English Premier League in India. (Read: MS Dhoni hard to contact when on a holiday, says Virat Kohli)
"A keen soccer enthusiast and a Manchester United fan, MS Dhoni will invite all sports fans to 'Join the Game' in a clutter breaking integrated marketing campaign which will be launched early next week. The campaign will have a strong on-air and digital media thrust," the channel said in a release.
The campaign has renditions of how Dhoni is always missing from action and is glued to the TV sets watching EPL every weekend while his family and friends run around looking for him.
"I am an avid EPL fan and I just played out a real situation in front of the camera. If I am not busy with cricket, I am always busy with EPL during week-ends. Soccer is extremely exciting and very close to my heart. I was a goal keeper during my school days. Even today, I play soccer as a warm up game ahead of key cricket matches," said Dhoni.
"I feel that Indian sports fans should consume different types of sports. I want them to be passionate about cricket as they are, but at the same time one needs to give healthy respect for other disciplines as well.
"This STAR Sports initiative to provide soccer commentary now in Hindi will go a long way in making soccer exciting to watch and comprehend for new audiences across the nation. Similar efforts should be done to promote other sports as well," he added.
This announcement comes on the back of the sports broadcaster announcing the launch of Hindi commentary for the first time on EPL. The Hindi commentary will be in addition to the English commentary and will be available for over 100 live matches across the season.
"We are delighted to have MS Dhoni come on board as the brand ambassador for EPL in the country. We are targeting to expand the fan base of EPL in India by leveraging the iconic power and fan following of MS Dhoni to attract cricket fans to sample EPL," said Vijay Rajput, Chief Operating Officer, ESPN Software India Pvt. Ltd.