February 4, 2009 12:15:18 am
February seems to be a bad time for the Delhi & Districts Cricket Association. The Navdeep Tomar saga,which lead to the dissolution of the selection committee in the same month three years back,came back to haunt the DDCA on Tuesday just when the current panel was about to sit to pick the squad for Ranji one-dayers.
The scheduled 6 pm meet at the Ferozeshah Kotla had to be postponed for the night as Tomar showd up there uninvited and began to inquire the selectors about his chances of making to the side. The meeting was finally convened at DDCA President Arun Jaitleys residence.
Curiously,the drama has the same set of characters that were there in February 2006 when Tomar was controversially picked as the 16th member for Delhi squad. The then Chairman of selectors Anil Jain,who is also a selector this time around,was sacked by Jaitley with the entire selection committee,for picking player. After that a three-member committee under Chetan Chauhan,who is the chairman of selectors now,was put in place by Jaitley.
Having got the sack last time around Jain said he kept the distance this time. He came in the evening and was enquiring about his chances of making to the squad. I told him I had nothing to do with him and especially when I was sacked because of him the last time around, Jain said.
Tomar then approached Chetan Chauhan after which the meeting was called off and the venue shifted. After the meeting,the squad list was faxed to the media,and none of the selectors was open to comment on what transpired at Kotla on Tuesday. And not wanting to be in the firing line like the last time,the selectors chose to keep their distance this time
Selectors announced a 15-member team for the Ranji one-dayers with Darshan Kumar as a stand by for Chetnya Nanda,who remains a doubtful starter due to an elbow injury. Nanda had missed the Duleep Trophy tie against the South Zone side because of the same injury. Interestingly both Rajat Bhatia and Virat Kohli,who did not bat in Norths second innings,have been declared fit. Left-arm seamer Ashish Nehra has also made the grade.
The Chairman (Chauhan) says all of them are fit to play, an unconvinced Jain had said before the meeting.
Squad: Aakash Chopra (c),Shikhar Dhawan,Mithun Manhas,Virat Kohli,Rajat Bhatia,Yogesh Nagar,Punit Bisht,Ashish Nehra,Parvinder Awana,Sumit Narhwal,Vartik Tihara,Manan Sharma,Gaurav Chhabra,Chetnya Nanda/Darshan Kumar and Pradeep Sangwan.
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