MSK Prasad, the former selection committee chief has backed Ajinkya Rahane’s selection for the upcoming South Africa tour, citing that experience matters a lot for any overseas tour. Prasad also added that Rahane always does well in away series and conditions helped him too but his poor form has made things worse for him only.
While speaking to India Today, Prasad has said that the selection committee could look at selecting players specific to home and away conditions. He also claimed that it’s important to go overseas tours with a good mix of youth and experienced players in the team as well.
“At the end of the day, it should be a mix of juniors and seniors. Even in 2013, he (Rahane) did well. Usually, Rahane performs well in overseas conditions but his record at home hasn’t been great. Taking these things into consideration, the selectors can look into players for home conditions and players for away conditions.
“Usually, Rahane is one guy who does really well in away conditions. Selectors are a bit puzzled because of his form. Whether they are going to look forward or back his experience is going to be their judgement,” he added.
India announced an 18-member squad for the Test series in South Africa, beginning December 26. Ajinkya Rahane, who has been going through rough patches recently, was retained in the squad but has been sacked as vice-captain. Rohit Sharma, who was appointed as India’s ODI captain on Wednesday, will be the deputy of Virat Kohli in the three-match Test series.
Standby Players: Navdeep Saini, Saurabh Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Arzan Nagwaswalla.#SAvIND
— BCCI (@BCCI) December 8, 2021
Ajinkya Rahane did not play the second Test against New Zealand at home due to an injury concern but his form this year has led to questions over his spot in the team too. He has scored 411 in 12 Tests at an average of 19.57 as well.
“You just can’t simply remove all the seniors” – MSK Prasad on selectors job
MSK Prasad, however, has said selectors will love to face a healthy competition for spots in the team but it is also important to have plans regarding the senior batters who are going through poor forms.
“First of all, it is good to have a healthy headache for the selectors. And secondly, you need to have a system in place. How many opportunities would you be giving to a senior cricketer, when do you want to induct a youngster? How many youngsters are on a tour? These are the things you should take into consideration, there should be a good balance,” MSK Prasad added.
“You just can’t simply remove all the seniors, at the same time, you can’t carry on with all youngsters, especially when you are going away. At home, you can try things but when you go away experience counts a lot. That’s why they need to have a perfect blend of youth and experience,” he concluded.