'It's also a message that we care about Ranji Trophy': Manjrekar names 'deserving' youngster for Test call-up
- Sanjay Manjrekar backed a batter from Mumbai for the Indian Test team's selection in the future and also explained why the Ranji Trophy deserves more attention.
With the Indian team recently going through huge changes in Test cricket, fans and experts have been left wondering about the replacements for senior veterans Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara. Due to the pair's poor form, the team management has given opportunities to the likes of Shreyas Iyer. But former India batter Sanjay Manjrekar also feels that Mumbai's Sarfaraz Khan is 'a Test potential kind of a player.' The 24-year-old recently ended his excellent Ranji Trophy campaign with a ton in the first innings of the final fixture, and then followed it up with a knock of 45 runs in the second innings.
Speaking during a press conference organised by the Sony Sports Network, Manjrekar said, "Because of the way he bats, you sort of wonder whether he's a Test potential kind of a player. But the amount of runs he's got in the last two seasons - and he doesn't get 103, 104, he gets big scores and it comes very quickly as well at a great strike rate".
Further pushing for his selection, he added, "So even if you don't have a spot readily available - you want to try out the incumbents first, because Shreyas Iyer has grabbed the opportunity as a Test batter by getting runs - there is absolutely no harm in getting Sarfaraz Khan in closer to the Indian Test squad".
Tagging the batter as 'deserving', the 56-year-old also called for the BCCI to show some attention to Ranji Trophy.
"Because when someone performs this heavily at the Ranji Trophy level, it's also to a message that we care about Ranji Trophy. We care about our First Class cricket. And when you recognise performances of your Ranji Trophy cricket and reward the players with recognition at the Test level, then you also elevate the importance of Ranji Trophy level", he stated.
"He is very deserving of coming close to a Test squad selection even if not in the playing XI".
The Indian red-ball team are currently in Leicester, playing a warm-up Test match against Leicestershire. After the match, they will be facing England in their final Test at Edgbaston from July 1 onwards.