Selectors have effected two changes in the Jharkhand Ranji squad for the match against Andhra Pradesh, scheduled in Dhanbad from December 15 to 18.
Lohardaga boys all-rounder Ajatshatru Singh and pacer Ashish Kumar have replaced vice-captain Manish Vardhan and seamer Yajuvendra Krishnatray in the 15-member outfit announced by JSCA late on Wednesday evening.
Explaining the reason behind the decision, JSCA sources said Manish — a former Jharkhand skipper — had not performed with the bat as an opener. Though one of the batting mainstays, the technically sound willow warrior’s stay at the wicket has been scratchy in the last five matches.
“Manish has not performed as expected. He is a seasoned player, but seems to have lost his confidence as of now. Ajatshatru has come up with some splendid performances with the willow in the Under-25 matches. He scored a match-winning 117 in the last outing versus Haryana. It was time to give him a break in the senior squad,” a senior JSCA functionary said.
Yajuvendra, on the other hand, went wicket-less in the last outing versus Tripura. “The Chaibasa-based bowler cut a sorry figure and that accounted for his ouster from the squad,” a JSCA source said. Ashish, his replacement, is young and being considered as a good investment.