Saba Karim comments on Ruturaj Gaikwad’s absence from India’s T20 squad
By SMCS - Jan 27, 2022 3:40 pm
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Former India selector Saba Karim was surprised to see Ruturaj Gaikwad’s absence from the T20 squad for the upcoming home series against West Indies. He opined on the fact that he was initially selected for international cricket on the basis of his T20 batting.

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad

Gaikwad, who made his international debut during the T20I series in Sri Lanka last year, has only been picked in the ODI squad for the series against West Indies. He was a part of the ODI squad in South Africa as well but did not get a chance as well.

While discussing about this, Karim said on the Khelneeti podcast: “Ruturaj is not part of the T20 team but has been included in ODIs. He was chosen for international cricket on the basis of his T20 performances. So a couple of changes are really absurd. Hopefully, we get a settled combination soon because there is not much time left (for the World Cup).”

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Meanwhile, the leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi has handed over the maiden call-up for the West Indies series. Deepak Hooda and Kuldeep Yadav have been included in the ODI team whereas Venkatesh Iyer is part of the T20 side as well. Asked about the same, Virat Kohli’s childhood coach Rajkumar Sharma has opined on that.

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad

Sharing an interesting anecdote about Kohli, Sharma revealed: “I remember when Virat debuted in Sri Lanka (in a T20I), Virender Sehwag got unfit. He (Virat) was told to either open or bat at 7. He said he will open though he had never opened even for our academy, leave alone in the Ranji Trophy. It all depends on the mindset of the player.”

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He explained: “There is no place at the top since four players, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul, are already fighting for three slots. Ruturaj will have to wait, unless one of these players fail. I don’t think that an opener should be moved to the middle-order. In the end, it all depends on the player, whether he is ready to adapt and accept the challenge.”