'Making the squad one thing, breaking into XI another': MI coach on Arjun Tendulkar's non-selection in IPL 2022
Arjun Tendulkar, a left-arm medium-pacer, was bought by Mumbai Indians (MI) for ₹30 lakh during the accelerated part of the mega auction in February but Sachin's son did not get a single game despite MI going through one of their worst seasons and finishing last. Arjun is yet to make his IPL debut
Arjun Tendulkar, a left-arm medium-pacer, was bought by Mumbai Indians for ₹30 lakh during the accelerated part of this year's Indian Premier League (IPL) mega auction but did not feature in any game of the 10-team tournament. While the five-time IPL winners endured a disappointing season with just four wins in 14 games, the team gave chances to new faces like Tim David, Ramandeep Singh, Sanjay Yadav, Kumar Kartikeya, Dewald Brevis, Tristian Stubbs in the last few games of their campaign. Many felt Arjun, the son of legendary Sachin Tendulkar, is ready for the IPL challenge. But the Mumbai Indians think-tank felt otherwise.
The 22-year-old Arjun has only played two T20 games for his domestic side Mumbai and featured in the 'T20 Mumbai' league. Despite being relatively inexperienced, the young player's non-selection was a hot topic of debate when Mumbai played their last fixture against Delhi Capitals at the iconic Wankhede Stadium.
Mumbai Indians bowling coach Shane Bond shared his thoughts on Arjun not finding a place in the eleven. The former Kiwi quick feels the cricketer still needs to hone his batting and fielding. He stressed that Arun has to earn his place by polishing up his skill-set moving forward.
"He's got some work to go. When you're playing for a team like Mumbai, making the squad is one thing but entering the playing XI is another. He still has a lot of hard work and development to do. When you play at this level, there's a fine line between giving everyone a game... but you have to earn your spot too. Arjun needs to work on his batting and fielding before finding a place on the team. Hopefully, he can make those progressions and earn a spot in the team," Bond told Sportskeeda.
Earlier, Tendulkar himself revealed the advice he gave to Arjun, saying he should focus on his game instead of thinking about getting a chance in the eleven.
"This is a different question. What I am thinking or what I feel is not important. The season is already over," Tendulkar said at a show 'SachInsight' when asked whether he would have liked to watch Arjun play this year.
According to Tendulkar, he doesn't get involved in the selection process and leaves the matter to the team management. "And if we speak about selection, I have never involved myself in selection. I leave all these things to the (team) management because that is how I have always functioned," Tendulkar elaborated.
Tendulkar, who is arguably the greatest in cricket's long history, said he always tells Arjun to stay focused and keep working hard to achieve success.
"And my conversation with Arjun has always been that the path is going to be challenging, it is going to be difficult. You started playing cricket because you are in love with cricket, continue to do so, continue to work hard and results will follow," he further added.