No place for ‘outsider’ Thakkar in Duleep squadhttps://indianexpress.com/article/news-archive/print/no-place-for-outsider-thakkar-in-duleep-squad/

No place for ‘outsider’ Thakkar in Duleep squad

When the Board of Control for Cricket in India gave a go ahead to its units to recruit two guest players at the start of the season...

When the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) gave a go ahead to its units to recruit two guest players at the start of the season,it was seen as an opening for talented players from domestic cricket’s top teams that didn’t make the cut at home. But now,it looks as if the move hasn’t worked too well.

The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association has expressed his disappointment over the selection of the North Zone Duleep Trophy squad,as the one of their top performer — Bhavin Thakkar — was not picked,the reason given being that “he was an outsider”. Thakkar moved from Mumbai to Himachal Pradesh last season. The 27-year-old opener is the second highest run-getter this season in plate group with 586 runs in six matches.

Himachal’s coach Rajdeep Kalsi,who attended Duleep Trophy selection meeting,spoke of this bias. “I was told that since Thakkar is an outsider,he wouldn’t be picked for the zonal team. I objected but was voted out by other members in the committee. I didn’t understand the logic of not selecting a player because he has come from different state,after all he is Indian. I’m not asking a player from another country to be picked in the Duleep Trophy,” Kalsi told The Indian Express.

BCCI’s chief administrative office Ratnakar Shetty confirmed that there was no rule that bars guests from being picked for zonal teams. “As far as the BCCI is concerned,we have made it clear to have an open selection — there’s no guideline on selecting a Zonal team,” he said. HPCA president Anurag Thakur has objected to this stand. “We have complained about this stand taken by the north zone selection committee,” he said. The convener of the committee Sunil Dev confirmed that he had received and a letter on this issue from HPCA.

The chairman of the north zone selection committee Yashpal Sharma,meanwhile,denied the HPCA allegations saying the committee wasn’t against including outsiders. “It was a unanimous decision,you can select only 15 players.”