The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Speculation over Sourav
- Kumble certain to be among Champions Trophy probables

Calcutta: With the International Cricket Council asking for a list of as many as 30 probables for the Champions Trophy, there’s speculation whether former Team India captain Sourav Ganguly will find his name there.

The tournament is being hosted by India from October 15-November 5 and the probables are going to be announced in Bangalore on August 9.

Reports from news agencies on Tuesday afternoon triggered the Sourav-specific speculation, but a call-up (even as a probable) will go against everything the present selection committee has been doing since being constituted last November.

For the record, Sourav hasn’t played a one-day International for as many as 11 months and didn’t manage a hundred in any form during his just-ended five-week contract with Northants.

“It’s news that Sourav could be one of the probables… Nobody has given that indication to me… Moreover, if somebody of his experience makes the list, then he must make the final 14/15, too,” one of the five selectors told The Telegraph.

He added: “Also, it has been months since Sourav’s name cropped up at a selection committee meeting… Even in the last one (where Dinesh Mongia got recalled), it’s not Sourav, but T.P. Singh who was discussed…”

While nothing should be ruled out entirely — after all, a ‘directive’ is possible — the selectors may pick youngsters like Rohit Sharma, besides falling back on the Gautam Gambhirs.

Speculation over Sourav could continue, but it’s certain that Anil Kumble is going to be in that list of 30. In all probability, Zaheer Khan as well. Perhaps, even Lakshmipathy Balaji.

Incidentally, a senior Board of Control for Cricket in India official remarked that 30 was “too big” a number for probables. It really is.

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