Rohit to remain captain; 20 players in WC plan

Skipper Rohit, along with head coach Rahul Dravid, attended a review meeting in Mumbai, which was conducted by BCCI secretary Jay Shah. Previous selection committee’s chairman Chetan Sharma, NCA head VVS Laxman and Board president Roger Binny also attended the meeting.
Rohit Sharma, Rahul Dravid and Virat Kohli at practice session
Rohit Sharma, Rahul Dravid and Virat Kohli at practice session

NEW DELHI: There is no imminent threat to Rohit Sharma’s ODI and Test captaincy as the BCCI top brass has not found anything unsatisfactory about his leadership in the traditional formats, according to sources in the Board.

Skipper Rohit, along with head coach Rahul Dravid, attended a review meeting in Mumbai, which was conducted by BCCI secretary Jay Shah. Previous selection committee’s chairman Chetan Sharma, NCA head VVS Laxman and Board president Roger Binny also attended the meeting.

Since the focus is the World Test Championship (WTC), where India has a good chance of making it to the final, and the 2023 ODI World Cup, Hardik Pandya was not a part of the meeting.

Stand-in T20I skipper Hardik is with the team in Mumbai for the T20I series against Sri Lanka, which starts on Tuesday. “Rohit is leading India in Tests and ODIs and there were no such discussions about his future as leader in these two formats. Look at his captaincy record, it is more than impressive,” a BCCI source privy to the development said on the condition of anonymity.

It was also decided that a pool of 20 players would be rotated till the 2023 World Cup. “The BCCI has shortlisted 20 players who will be rotated till the 50 overs ICC World Cup,” Shah said after the meeting.

In what could be a significant move by the Board, Chetan, who attended the review meeting on Sunday, could retain his chairmanship of the senior national selection committee.

If not chairman, he is likely to be the representative from the North Zone. The name of former India pacer Venkatesh Prasad is also doing the rounds for representation from the South Zone, but his induction into the panel is not a certainty.

Chetan being included in the planning of roadmap for the 2023 ODI World Cup in itself is a significant development. “First things first, if Chetan would not have been told, he would not have applied in the first place. That is an indication. India has a World Cup to play in 10 months. Chetan and Harvinder [Singh]’s presence will add continuity along with three new members,” the source added.

It is understood that SS Das, a former opener, is a big favourite from East Zone because of his 21-Test experience. From West, Gujarat veteran Mukund Parmar, Salil Ankola and Sameer Dighe are engaged in a three-way race.

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