A day after the BCCI appointed the new Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), the focus now shifts to the appointment of the new selection panel. A number of high profile names have thrown their hat in the ring and this makes for a compelling watch. However, BCCI president Sourav Ganguly has made his stance pretty clear - the most capped Test cricketer, and not the earliest to have played for India, would be the chairman.
In an interview with Hindustan Times, Ganguly said: “It will be the one with the most Tests.”
A number of former cricketers like Ajit Agarkar, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Venkatesh Prasad, Rajesh Chauhan, Nayan Mongia, Chetan Chauhan, Nikhil Chopra, Abey Kuruvilla have applied for the post. Current chief selector MSK Prasad, who term expired last September and Gagan Khoda are the two outgoing selectors.
So what does this mean?
If Sivaramakrishnan, who has played nine Test matches, had been shortlisted, he would have become the automatic choice, as he is the senior most, having made his debut for India back in 1983. However, now after BCCI's statement, Prasad (with 33 Tests) and Agarkar (with 26 Tests) are also at an equal footing and can get the job if selected.
There is ambiguity over whether or not the BCCI will still follow the zonal method in their selection process. For instance, Jatin Paranjpe is already a selector from West Zone and that could well mean that Agarkar's chances stand clipped. However, BCCI is not willing to comment on the issue.
According to a source in BCCI, "No, we shall see. India is a vast country, so we will try and keep zones in mind. But everyone who has applied and meets the given criteria, stands a chance.”
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Former India cricketers Rudra Pratap Singh, Madan Lal, and Sulkashana Naik were on Friday appointed members of the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) by the BCCI.
A statement by the BCCI read: "Mr Lal represented India in 39 Tests and 67 ODIs and was a member of the victorious Indian team that lifted the World Cup in 1983. He later served as the coach of the national side and was also a member of the senior selection committee. Mr Singh played for India in 14 Tests, 58 ODIs and 10 T20Is and was a part of the Indian squad that won the World T20 in South Africa in 2007. Ms Naik played two Tests, 46 ODIs and 31 T20Is for India in a career spanning 11 years."