Friday, August 10, 2012

Selections for NZ Test Series & T20

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Rohit Sharma’s non-selection for the New Zealand test series may be positively interpreted as a “rest” to sort out issues with his form, regardless of format. His selection to the T20 squad could also be likewise interpreted as a statement of confidence in his potential and viability as a long term India prospect.
Some might argue that blooding Rohit Sharma against New Zealand would have been a good strategy, given that they are the weakest test team today. Minus Vettori, they become cannon fodder for India’s flat track bullies.
I am somewhat ambivalent, but I’m willing to cast my lot with the selectors in this case. We might see a false dawn if Rohit were to score a lot of runs against New Zealand. I’m willing to bet with the selectors that he needs to be blooded against England much like Virat Kohli was thrown to the Australian wolves or even Tendulkar who was sent into the fire-pit of Pakistan against Wasim, Waqar and Imran.
Suresh Raina has come back into the test squad probably due to backing from Dhoni and his own desire to persevere. Pujara is certain to make the squad and unless Dhoni opts for seven batsman, Raina will likely not play. Pujara’s selection is welcome relief for die-hards like me. We hope that he carries the torch forward. India’s ODI riches mean that he would likely not play the other formats, but hopefully, the public, selectors and Pujara himself retain interest in the art-form that his test cricket batsmanship.
The selectors have picked three seamers and three spinners and I don’t have an issue with the Chawla selection, unlike many other pundits. He is probably included simply to provide a leg-spinning option. In a two test series, Chawla is unlikely to play, unless someone is injured or a rank turner is prepared and India play only one seamer. Umesh Yadav too may not play if Ishant Sharma is fully fit.
Regardless of who plays, India should expect to steamroll New Zealand in both the tests unless they play on eighties style featherbeds. Hopefully, there are rank turners as promised by Gambhir during the Aussie debacle. Otherwise, we might be embarrassed by a mediocre New Zealand side. While on Gambhir, it’s good that he is back as Vice Captain. Hopefully, he has figured out how to be supportive of his team management and not be a loose canon.
Yuvraj’s selection to the T20 squad is a good emotional gamble. However, Balaji’s selection is hard to understand. I’m a fan of Balaji and would have reveled in his selection four years ago, but now it’s a little stale. Praveen Kumar’s absence from both squads is weird, unless I missed something about his fitness. He is the canniest bowlers that India possesses and not including him in the T20 squad is a serious mistake.
Harbhajan’s comeback to the T20 squad is also a good move on part of the selectors. He too is a street smart operator and with Ashwin could form a tough bowling combination in Sri Lanka. In T20 games, it’s not so bad to include two off-spinners if they are in really good form.
Overall, though with Irfan Pathan regaining his luster, India have a more balanced T20 look to them. Should Yuvraj be ready to go, Dhoni would have several bowling options and a good T20 batting side to boot. Winning the World Cup with this squad is possible. Nitpicking aside, these selections are pretty good.


Golandaaz said...

Timid selection...Basically players called in and expressed their preferences, desires and interests and Srikant obliged...

The home series would have been a good one to start afresh and help the young side mature before the away tours 2 years on. This was never going to happen but that does not mean this is a good selection.

What are Sachin and VVS doing in the team? I am exasperated....and why are ODI failures used to justify non-inclusion in Tests...I mean what if Rohit Sharma is truly a pathetic ODI player but a decent Test does one find that out?

Yuvi is on the verge of becoming the biggest thing in cricket. His selection has to be applauded. He can inspire the team to win the WC just sitting on the bench and doing his thing in the nets

Vidooshak said...

One finds out by sending them on A tours, I suppose. Rohit didn't exactly set the stands alight over in the Carribean. In the absence of consistent performances in long and short forms of the game, this is good for Rohit. He is probably more likely to fail than succeed and then dumping him out of the test squad would have been terrible. Raina is a good interim benchwarmer.

Forget it, Laxman and Tendulkar are not going to be dropped. They have to leave on their own. In these circumstances the selections are good.

price per head demo said...

in my opinion I think that those are very clever selections for NZ test series and I could not have worded better than you ;)