Dec. 2: The India squads for the third and final Test and the Test series in Australia may well be picked with nobody in the chief selector’s chair.
That has become a real possibility with Dilip Vengsarkar threatening the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that his committee won’t meet in Bangalore on Wednesday, unless the controversy-sparking seven guidelines are withdrawn.
That even the chief selector can’t interact with the media is one of the guidelines.
“Vengsarkar has sent a letter to the president (Sharad Pawar), with a copy marked to the other office-bearers…. He has talked of the committee as a whole, but we’re confident that the other selectors see matters very differently,” a source told The Telegraph late tonight.
According to the source, there are “technicalities” involved in removing (and appointing) selection committee chairmen and, so, the BCCI will be only too happy if Vengsarkar decides to put in his papers.
What’s clear is that the BCCI is in no mood for a dialogue with the chief selector. Either he backs off or resigns.
What’s not clear is whether the president’s wide-ranging powers allow for somebody like former captain, selection committee chairman and cricket manager Chandu Borde or one-time opener, coach and selector Aunshuman Gaekwad to do a holding operation.
Incidentally, two of the remaining four selectors — Sanjay Jagdale and Ranjib Biswal — are also office-bearers in state associations. Venkatapathi Raju and Bhupinder Singh (Jr) aren’t.
Yesterday, Vengsarkar (a former captain) sent an SMS to Pawar and president-elect Shashank Manohar after an “unhappy” interaction with them, saying he would quit if he was “unwanted.”
Vengsarkar and the BCCI (which has been facing one crisis after another) have been at war for a month, particularly after he was barred from writing. That he would, on and off, write for a Calcutta-based player management company is what irked the bigwigs the most.
Among other things, the question of ethics came up.
The chief selector did air his grievances on a range of issues during a meeting with Pawar in New Delhi on November 22 and, apparently, was given to understand that a compensation package would be worked out.
That didn’t happen.
Vengsarkar, who left Calcutta last night itself (much ahead of his scheduled departure), didn’t take calls throughout the day but did meet Biswal at his Mumbai residence.
He has been heading the selection committee for 15 months, a tenure which has seen highs and lows. Rahul Dravid’s resignation as captain, too.
The chief selector, by the way, is a vice-president in the Mumbai Cricket Association. Pawar’s the boss there also.
The guidelines, See Sport