Abhishek Nayar’s dream of playing 100 First Class games for Mumbai looks bleak as the senior selection committee on Monday omitted the 35-year-old all rounder’s name from the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) off-season fitness camp.
Last season, Nayar was dropped from Mumbai team after a poor Ranji Trophy season in which he managed only 130 runs at an average of 18.57 and eight wickets.
While most of the senior players like Aditya Tare, Suryakumar Yadav, Siddhesh Lad found a place in the list, Nayar’s exclusion has given a clear indication that MCA has moved on from him.
The committee headed by former India pacer Ajit Agarkar, Nilesh Kulkarni, Jatin Paranjape and Sunil More has made it clear that form will be the only criteria for selection of players in Mumbai squad.
Sources in the MCA informed that Nayar has to prove his form to get back into reckoning for Mumbai. “He will be only considered if he scores runs in local cricket. There are other youngsters who are also waiting for a chance. If Nayar has to come back in the Mumbai team, he will have to come back with plenty of runs behind him,” sources in the MCA said.
The left-handed batsman might not have made headlines on the field in the recent past but off it, Nayar has been recognised for the role he played in helping Dinesh Karthik rediscover his form. He even mentored Kolkata Knight Riders in this year’s IPL and sources in MCA informed that many of his current Mumbai team mates wanted him to be coach of Mumbai Ranji team after Sameer Dighe decided not to continue his tenure as team’s coach.
The selection committee also included name of Armaan Jaffer, nephew of former India opener Wasim Jaffer, who missed out last season due to knee injury. Prithvi Shaw and Jay Bista are two other youngsters who have retained their place in the off-season camp.
Meanwhile, Arjun Tendulkar, who was recently roped in for India U-19 squad, has not been called up for the senior team. He will continue his pre-season fitness camp with MCA U-19 team.