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Split wide open over Sachin, Dhoni

cricket Updated: Sep 18, 2007 15:25 IST
Kadambari Murali
Kadambari Murali
Hindustan Times
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On the eve of the selection committee meeting to decide who succeeds Rahul Dravid as India captain, two selectors told HT they were “confused”.

Both said that while the BCCI won’t overtly interfere in the selection, they might “indicate” what they wanted.

Even within the BCCI, the situation was unclear. One top official said there was no question of the BCCI interfering, but another said that several informal chats between BCCI members had witnessed a divide over whether the captaincy should go to a youngster or a senior.

What led to rumours on Monday was a 1:30 pm meeting between BCCI chief Sharad Pawar and selection panel chairman Dilip Vengsarkar, ostensibly when the two ran into each other at Mumbai’s Cricket Centre.

Pawar has repeatedly stated he will not interfere. Still, his statement that he did not mind “split captaincy” indicated that MS Dhoni could be named one-day skipper on Tuesday, while Sachin Tendulkar, if willing, could be named the Test skipper later.

Vengsarkar said the selectors had “open minds”. But sources said Tendulkar has indicated that one-day captaincy won’t be ideal for him because the frenetic schedule took a toll on his body.

Vengsarkar, asked whether there was a concern in appointing a rookie skipper like Dhoni ahead of two tough one-day series against Australia and Pakistan, replied, “If at all we appoint Dhoni, it would be for 12 matches, we won’t chop and change.”