Why the BCCI's new selection policy could backfire
Recently, the chief of selectors created a stir when he announced that they are going to start a rotation policy system to find the core of the team which would make the cut for the ICC World Cup, 2019.
Keeping that in mind senior players like Yuvraj Singh, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav were rested for the upcoming ODI series against Sri Lanka.
This is an interesting, yet perplexing move made by the selectors which would help them assess the bench strength and arrive at the ideal squad to be selected for the World Cup.
It is evident that players who have not playing that well or whose fitness levels are not up to the mark have been left out and in their place young, talented, fitter players have been given a chance to prove their skills to the selectors.
Here is why this new selection policy could backfire
What this new selection policy intends to do is to chop and change a few players, retaining the core of the side.
This could backfire as the last thing a team needs when its doing well is too many personnel changes, as that could hamper the team’s balance.
It can be argued that even if there are change been made to the squad, the players newly picked need to be given a longer rope to justify their selection.
It would be strange if the players picked, like Manish Pandey or Axar Patel, do really well and then in the next series, the selectors decide to bring back Yuvraj Singh and Ravindra Jadeja into the team.
This move made by the selection panel is a bit hazy and unclear as if there are too many changes made as then the overall morale of the team could get affected, and a settled unit is anytime more intimidating for the opposition than a team where there are constant changes being made on a regular basis.
Dropping key players and terming it as ‘resting’ is not good
The selectors decided to ‘rest’ key players like Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja for the upcoming ODI series against Sri Lanka, for viewers or fans like us it’s very clear that these players have been dropped owing to their mediocre performances in the recent past.
It can be argued that they may be rested due to the workload they have endured off late but Mohammed Shami just came into the side after a prolonged injury break and even Ravichandran Ashwin has been used sparingly in the limited overs formats for more than a year or so now.
It gives us a clear impression that these players have not played too well and hence been dropped.
With Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya doing well, it looks like the selectors want to put the onus on them and spinners like Yuzvendra Chahal and Axar Patel to get the job done in the limited overs formats.
The Indian public, too, can get really emotional and can lash out at decisions made by the selectors if their favorite players get dropped unceremoniously .
This selection panel should tread rather carefully as any unwarranted action taken by them could lead to frustrated fans showing their discontent on Social media and more importantly this would not present a good image for the Indian team overall.
As if the same players who are rested are to come back into the side later on, then they would look under cooked, under prepared and prove to be ineffective which is how this particular move by the selection committee could cause more harm than good for the team in the short or long term.
A consistent, steady team is anytime better for the team to deliver positive results and this also maintains the credibility of the selectors as well.
The mishandling of Ravichandran Ashwin can backfire
The selectors decided to rest Ravichandran Ashwin for the upcoming ODI series. That doesn’t make any sense as in the past year or so Ashwin has found himself in the bench more often than not when India play ODI’s or T20’s.
Under MSD’s captaincy and now under Virat Kohli, Ashwin has been in & out of the side. And to be fair with Ashwin when given the chance he has been effective although not as lethal as he is in Test matches.
The current decision to not pick him for the ODI series and instead send him to play county cricket for Worcestershire gives the impression that the selectors are looking way too far ahead.
They are thinking about their Test match series against England in England in 2018 already by sending Ashwin to play there rather than have him play in the ODI team and cement his place.
As only if he plays more in team can he get a chance to establish himself as a full-time spinner going into the World Cup.
As we should not forget what Ravichandran Ashwin can bring to the table if given a consistent run in the team. He is a world spinner and currently he is among the world's leading all-rounders as well which makes him multi-dimensional.
Sending him to play county cricket may help India when they travel to England but keeping the World Cup in mind, India should consider playing and giving their lead spinner the confidence that no matter what happens, they are willing to back him. Knowing his quality that can prove to be really beneficial for India in the longer run.