India chief selector MSK Prasad issues a warning to underperforming stars

Sudhir Gupta 18:20 16/09/2018
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The likes of Shikhar Dhawan have been warned.

India’s chief selector MSK Prasad has issued a warning to underperforming players in the wake of the team’s 1-4 Test series defeat at the hands of England.

In an interview with the Times of India, Prasad warned underperforming stars that their place could be given to younger players if they did not make the most of the opportunities to them. After narrowly losing the Test series in South Africa 2-1 earlier in the year, the No1 ranked Indians were expected to run England much closer.

Reviewing the series defeat, the chief selector touched upon the poor showing by India’s openers Murali Vijay, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul.

“When we pick players for particular slots, they should be given enough opportunities before we move on and look at youngsters,” Prasad was quoted as saying.

“Yes, our openers could have done better. Having said that, the England openers also failed miserably. The conditions were tough and the openers of both the teams failed,” he added.

While Virat Kohli ended up the series top-scorer with 593 runs, the rest of the batting card left plenty to be desired. India’s Test stalwarts like Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane shone only in patches with the former striking a brilliant unbeaten ton in the defeat at Southampton while the latter registered two half-centuries.

Murali Vijay was dropped from the squad for the final two Tests.

Murali Vijay was dropped from the squad for the final two Tests.

While defending the performances of the two senior players, Prasad urged them to show more consistency.

“They (Pujara and Rahane) have enough experience behind them to be the mainstay of our middle order. They did well here too but they could have been a bit more consistent,” the former India wicketkeeper said.

India’s next overseas assignment will take place in Australia at the end of the year where Kohli’s men are slated to play four Tests, three ODIs and as many T20s. India’s underperforming batsmen will be wary of their place in the squad if Prasad’s latest words are anything to go by.

“After giving enough opportunities, if the players don’t deliver then in all fairness we need to look at youngsters who are doing well on the domestic cricket circuit and for India ‘A’,” the India selector stated.

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