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Most first-class appearances by Indians before national call-up

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Not every cricketer has got the opportunity to play Test cricket for their respective countries after just a few dozen matches at the first-class level. Some had to grind it out for years before finally being called-up their national squads albeit at a relatively higher age - the great Australian Mike Hussey is a classic example - while only a few earn the faith of the selectors early.

Sportskeeda lists 5 Indian cricketers who played the most number of first-class matches before they were eventually handed over calls to be a part of - or represent - the senior side.

#5 Shute Banerjee - 105 matches

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Shute Banerjee (centre) played only a single Test for India which came against West Indies in 1949

A right-arm medium pacer who was a more than useful tailender with the bat, Shute Banerjee's international career unfortunately remained restricted to just a solitary Test match. But before that opportunity finally arrived against the West Indies in 1949, Banerjee had a part of been multiple unofficial Tests like that as far back as in 1935 against an Australian side led by Jack Ryder, in 1937 against the team under Lord Tennyson and another one in 1945 against an Australian Services team.

However, in his only Test match for India, Banerjee, despite being 37 and well past his prime years as a bowler, returned figures of 1/73 and 4/54 at Bombay, having earlier had to sit out for two tours to England in 1936 as well as 1946. Eventually, he finished his first-class career with an aggregate of 138 matches, bagging 385 wickets at 26.69.

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A childhood cricket enthusiast, my earliest cricket memory goes back to the 2003 World Cup, when I was 7. With a hobby of cricket commentary and writing from my early days, I earned an invitation for employment by aged only 20, and have also had the opportunity to interact with the great analyst Harsha Bhogle.
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