Indian cricket team selection used to be a farce most of the time as we find our footing wrong on overseas soil and thereby we are not able to win a test series in Australia and South Africa despite having the fab four Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman in the side at the same time. Sandeep Patil before signing off created a stir saying that Sachin would have been dropped from the side had he not retired from the International cricket once for all. Team selection was posing a problem all the time as we find that regional bias and quota system prevail over the talent of the players. So we lost out an opportunity to select quality players. After Kapil Dev India was unable to produce a quality all-rounder for a long time.
The selection process in India is a closed door affair and we find lots of loop holes in team selection. So, what is transpired in the four walls of a five star hotel is not made available in the public domain and the talented players are at the receiving end all the time. There is no substitute to experience but we give little importance to that aspect. In the present team of selectors MSK Prasad and Gagan Khoda, who were part of the earlier selection committee under Sandeep Patel, were reappointed, while the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) named Jatin Paranjpe, Debang Gandhi and Sarandeep Singh in the new panel and thereby BCCI refuses to comply with Lodha Committee recommendations.
There have been previous selection committees with members who did not have a single Test under their belt but they were steered by high-profile chairman including Dilip Vengsarkar, Krishnamachari Srikkanth and Patil. The new committee will be responsible for 13 Test matches and the 2019 World Cup. One of the most expected decision in Indian cricket is to pass on the ODI captaincy to Virat Kohli from MS Dhoni also rests with Prasad’s committee. MSK Prasad is the chairman of the selection and it came as a big surprise. Many feel the newly appointed committee does not have the experience to deal with such pressure situations faced in Indian cricket after series loss overseas. The new set of selectors, who have not played too much international matches can sometimes take tough calls as opposed while big name selectors think twice before dropping a reputed cricketer. MSK Prasad and Gagan Khoda have done a good job since last one year. It is up to the three new team of selectors to decide and how they conduct the selection process in a most efficient way without much controversy. Jatin Paranjpe is a task master and a tough character from Mumbai. Give them a chance to decide about future of Indian cricket.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)