The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Dravid for Sourav in XI
- Fellow selector differs with what More said after meeting

Calcutta: For whatever reasons, on Saturday, chief selector Kiran More insisted Sourav Ganguly wasn’t guaranteed a place in the first XI when the three-Test series against Pakistan got underway in Lahore on January 13.

However, one of his four colleagues had something entirely different to say a day later.

“I can categorically tell you Rahul Dravid told us (in Mumbai) that, having been selected, Sourav would be played. I couldn’t have got it wrong... In any case, when we have brought back somebody for his experience (86 Tests, 5,150 runs) that has to be utilised,” the selector told The Telegraph.

According to him, coach Greg Chappell didn’t say anything to suggest he differed from the Team India captain’s thinking. As reported in these columns, Dravid’s support was instrumental in getting his predecessor a seat on the January 5 flight to Lahore.

The selector, though, couldn’t confirm who would open with Virender Sehwag to enable both Sourav and Yuvraj Singh to feature in the XI. It won’t surprise if Yuvraj is asked to do that job ' something he has already done once.

Sehwag’s regular partner for over a year, Gautam Gambhir, has been out of form. He has been retained, but even if Sourav wasn’t recalled, the thinktank would surely have looked at somebody else to launch the innings at the Gaddafi.

For the record, Sourav has been selected as a middle-order batsman and will take to the big series with scores of 40 and 39 in his last Test (at the Kotla, versus Sri Lanka).

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