Sunil Gavaskar slams Indian cricket selectors for Ajinkya Rahane’s T20 omission
Sunil Gavaskar, former Indian cricket team captain, is baffled to find selectors exclude Ajinkya Rahane despite his stellar form in the ODI series against Australia.india vs australia 2017 Updated: Oct 05, 2017 18:09 IST
Sunil Gavaskar, former Indian cricket team captain, has lambasted national cricket selectors for not including Ajinkya Rahane for the three-match T20I series against Australia starting on Saturday, saying a player who scored four consecutive half-centuries cannot be treated in such a manner.
Rahane (244) had ended the five-match ODI series as India’s second highest run-getter, behind Rohit Sharma, who notched up 296 runs. And barring the first ODI in Chennai, the 29-year-old scored fifties in each match, giving India solid starts throughout the series. However, he was overlooked for the T20 series.
Rahane got a sustained run in the ODIs against Australia as Shikhar Dhawan missed the series to attend to his ailing wife. The left-handed opener is back in the squad for the T20s.
“The man has scored four consecutive fifties, why is he not included in the team?” Gavaskar asked in an interaction on NDTV. “KL Rahul is a fine player, but he didn’t play a single game in the five one-day matches against Australia. Why is he in the team and Rahane, who scored four half-centuries, not there?”
Gavaskar added: “Some reason has to be given by the selection committee to say ‘look Rahul is such a better player than Ajinkya Rahane in the T20 format and therefore we’ve picked him’. But a man who doesn’t find a place in the last 5-6 ODI games for India, still finds a place in T20.”
Rahane was Man-of-the-Series in the ODI series in West Indies, but he got to play only one game in the subsequent ODI series in Sri Lanka. Sunil Gavaskar was critical of the team management saying it appeared only players with tattoos and fancy haircuts seemed to get a chance.
Ajinkya Rahane has steered clear of any controversy, saying he respected the selectors’ decision and backed competitiveness in the dressing room.
“So much cricket we play, the team management, selectors take a decision and we respect it. Speaking about the competition, it is necessary and it helps you to give your best performance. Whoever gets a chance does well for the team. I have always enjoyed the competition,” he had said after the squad was announced.