‘We were looking at him as Ashwin’s backup’: Former selector explains why Krishnappa Gowtham is yet to make India debut

Feb 22, 2021 07:43 AM IST

Singh praised Gowtham’s abilities, adding that the latter was in the race of getting a chance in the limited-overs formats.

All-rounder Krishnappa Gowtham hogged the limelight on Thursday as he became the most-expensive uncapped Indian cricketer in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL). He was snapped up by Chennai Super Kings (CSK) for a whopping price of 9.25 crore at the players' auction held in Chennai.

All-rounder Krishnappa Gowtham (L), former Indian captain MS Dhoni (R)(Twitter)
All-rounder Krishnappa Gowtham (L), former Indian captain MS Dhoni (R)(Twitter)

Despite 1045 runs and 166 wickets in 42 first-class games, the Karnataka all-rounder is yet to make his international debut. Meanwhile, former Indian selector Sarandeep Singh revealed that Gowtham was once considered as the back-up option for Ravichandran Ashwin during his tenure.

In a conversation with Sportskeeda, Singh praised Gowtham’s on-field abilities, adding that the latter was in the race of getting a chance in the limited-overs formats.

“If you see his domestic record, he has been performing all the time. He has been picked for India A for the last 2-3 years and has been doing consistently well. In fact, in case Ravichandran Ashwin was to get injured or was unfit, we were looking at K Gowtham as back-up spinner. He was in our minds for ODIs and T20Is as well,” Sarandeep Singh told Sportskeeda.

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But why Gowtham never donned the Indian colours? Singh replied that the all-rounder was unlucky during his time as a selector as India had a plethora of spin options then.

“With Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal as well as the all-round brilliance of Ravindra Jadeja, we were blessed with excess options. Even Kedar Jadhav was chipping in with the ball and picking up a few wickets. That’s why we couldn’t pick K Gowtham in the Indian team. So, he deserves what he has got,” Singh said further.

Sharing his opinion on Goatham’s IPL stint, the former Indian selector was surprised over his release by Rajasthan Royals and Punjab Kings before getting picked up by MS Dhoni-led CSK.

“K Gowtham also did very well for Rajasthan Royals earlier. I don’t know why they let him go. He can bat also and bowl also. He was actually pretty good for them. I don’t understand why some franchises release decent players. Last season, he was injured so he couldn’t play many games for Punjab. He deserves this chance,” said Singh.

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