Rahul Sanghvi, the former India spinner and a veteran of 95 first-class matches, was told last week by some of the Delhi selectors and team management that he does not fit into their scheme of things, and thus must gracefully opt out of the away games to make way for the youngsters.
But on Wednesday, after two out of five Delhi selectors — coach Chetan Chauhan and Vinay Lamba — sat down to name a replacement for the injured Kunnal Lall, Sanghvi was still part of the team. The 33-year-old refused to oblige, deciding to continue till he is actually axed.
After last week's selection meeting, two senior selectors had told HT that "Sanghvi would not be touring with the team, come what may." In fact, one of them has registered a protest against Sanghvi's inclusion, but he was told to wait and give the veteran spinner a choice to exit in a graceful manner.
Selection committee chairman Atul Wasan, who is currently in Dubai and had been instrumental in keeping Sanghvi in the squad, was also consulted over the phone. Wasan, who was absent from this match too, supported Sanghvi and thus only one change was made in the team, Ashish Malhotra replacing Lall. The explanation was that Sanghvi "was selected for the next three games".
This all happened on the sidelines of Delhi's match against Karnataka, in which the hosts lost two vital points, hampered badly by the absence of a quality spinner.
Earlier, off-spinner Yogesh Sachdeva — who failed miserably in the only game he got this season — was reportedly selected at the behest of Wasan, with the support of two other selectors, Nikhil Chopra and Raj Kumar Sharma, despite the objection of the other two selectors.
It would be interesting if anyone in the DDCA could question the selectors' wisdom in keeping Delhi a player short, especially when coach Chauhan had clearly told Sanghvi that the team is "looking beyond him".
Since Wasan has never bothered to watch Delhi struggle on the field, it would be interesting to see how long could he dictate terms from the TV studios.