A detailed look at India”s 2017 Champions Trophy Squad :- After enacting a high drama, “Will they / Wont’ they?”, BCCI finally (and quite rightly so) decided to send Team India to play in the Champions’ Trophy 2017.
One drama followed another. This time it was the squad selection. The ‘wise men’ in BCCI have put up a fifteen member squad for the tourney.
Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Ajinkya Rahane, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Manish Pandey, Ashwin R, Ravindra Jadeja, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami
Looking at the names in the squad it gives an impression that the BCCI selection committee would NOT have spent more than two to three minutes in the all-important meeting, before signing on the dotted line.
It appears most of the players have walked straight into the squad on their own, as if it was their ‘birth right’ based on good performances displayed many moons ago. Current form, current performances etc seemed to have been thrown out of the window.
No effort has been made to bring in young and new blood into the team, though quite a few could be considered and given an opportunity to be in the national squad.
One name that immediately comes to mind is that of the wicket-keeper-batsman Rishabh Pant from Delhi. This 19-year old has been hitting the headlines with his excellent performances in the U19 World Cup in Bangladesh and in the domestic season for 2016-17.
The other name that should have been part of the squad is that of the senior pro, wicket-keeper-batsman from Tamil Nadu, Dinesh Karthik.
DK had an excellent domestic season, single-handedly helping his team, Tamil Nadu, with the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2017 and the Deodhar Trophy 2017.
Scoring 607 runs from 9 outings (remaining unbeaten twice), DK had averaged 86.71 with a couple of centuries and 4 half-tons in the Vizzy Trophy.
He followed it up with another stellar performance in the Deodhar Trophy, amassing 247 runs from 3 innings at an average of 82.33 with a century and a half-century to boot.
DK had topped the list of run-getters in both the tourneys. This is the best a player can do to justify a place in the national squad. It’s upto the selectors to take cognisance of these performances and reward the player/s.
The only consolation that comes across is that, both these players, Pant and Karthik, have been named as ‘stand by’ just in case they could be required to ‘fill in’ for some one.