Wriddhiman Saha next Bengal star: Ganguly

So who after Sourav Ganguly from Bengal? Every time this question has been put to him,the southpaw has preferred to stay politically correct.

Written by Shamik Chakrabarty | Kolkata | Published:February 19, 2009 12:45 pm

So who after Sourav Ganguly from Bengal? Every time this question has been put to him,the southpaw has preferred to stay politically correct. “There are lots of talents in Bengal. With hard work and some luck,they can achieve more than what I have achieved.” This used to be Ganguly’s standard answer to the question.

At last there’s a refreshing change. Perhaps,he has selected the man for the job. After the Vijay Hazare Trophy match against Orissa,Ganguly dropped a hint that young stumper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha could be the next big thing from Bengal. “He (Saha) is an outstanding wicketkeeper and a very good batsman. He played well last year. He will mature and play better this year. He is a real India prospect,” said the former Indian captain.

Together,they stitched a 136-run partnership for the second wicket at the Eden Gardens on Tuesday to see Bengal through. Saha remained unbeaten on 102,while Ganguly contributed 64.

Saha got the chance to play for Bengal in the Ranji Trophy only after Deep Dasgupta signed up with the ICL. The journey that began in November 27 is heading towards the right direction. Saha has made even the likes of John Buchanan and Ricky Ponting sit up and take notice.

A successful stint with the Kolkata Knight Riders followed by an India A call-up has made this frail-looking 25-year-old from Shaktigarh,Burdwan one of the top contenders for the big league. However,the fight is on with Dihesh Karthik and Partiv Patel.

“Sourav is spot on with his observations. He (Saha) is technically the best wicketkeeper in the country at the moment,way ahead of Karthik and Patel,even better than Mahendra Singh Dhoni,” said the Bengal chief selector Sambaran Banerjee,who knows a thing or two about wicket-keeping. “I don’t think there’s a wicketkeeper in the business whose gathering is better,” Banerjee elaborates.

The BCCI-appointed selector from East Zone Raja Venkat concurs. “The entire selection committee is very impressed with his ‘keeping. Till the last season,he was batting low down the order hampering his prospect in the process. After I took over,I brought this to Bengal team management’s notice. He is now opening the innings or playing at No 3 and scoring up the order. He has all the qualities to join the big league,” Venkat concluded.

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