The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Two Big Ifs before Sourav
- A ray of possibility of readmission into one-day team before Lanka Tests begin

Vadodara, Nov. 12: Much will probably depend on how Team India fares in the first three ODIs against South Africa, but it’s possible that Sourav Ganguly could be recalled for the last two matches.

The first three are to be played in Hyderabad (November 16), Bangalore (November 19) and Chennai (November 22). The last two are to be hosted by Calcutta (November 25) and Mumbai (November 28).

The selectors have, of course, retained the XV who did duty in the last two ODIs versus Sri Lanka. With Team India winning the seventh by five wickets here late this afternoon, the series finished with an unprecedented 6-1 scoreline.

Sourav had no role and nobody expected Kiran More and the rest to make a change at this point in time.

In fact, except for Mohammed Kaif (who missed the first five matches on account of a hamstring injury), the other XIV did the entire circuit: Nagpur, Mohali, Jaipur, Pune, Ahmedabad/Motera, Rajkot and Vadodara.

According to The Telegraph’s sources, Sourav may come into the picture in case of:

(a) A below par performance by those chosen for the first three ODIs against South Africa, ranked No. 2 and/or (b) Consensus on the need to give him international outings before the three-Test series versus Lanka.

The Tests are to be begin just four days after the end of the South Africa series and, at the moment, there’s no question mark over Sourav making the Test squad.

Not that chief ministers should influence the Team India selection, but Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s rather strong ‘who can stop Sourav (from making a comeback)’ observation yesterday hasn’t been missed by anybody.

“There definitely are many ifs... However, don’t be surprised if Sourav returns before the month is out,” one of the sources said.

The XV for the last two matches against South Africa are going to be picked in Chennai on November 22.

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