Sivaramakrishnan likely to head national selection panel

According to the new constitution of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), “the senior most Test cap among the members of the (senior selection) committee shall be appointed as the chairman.”

Among the three candidates vying for the two vacancies, L. Sivaramakrishnan, Venkatesh Prasad and Ajit Agarkar – the tenures of selection panel chief M.S.K. Prasad and Gagan Khoda are concluding –  the former India and Tamil Nadu leg-spinner is tipped to be the chairman since the BCCI rules back him.

Sivaramakrishnan made his Test debut way back in 1983 – he was a teenage prodigy – against Clive Lloyd’s mighty West Indians in Antigua.

Subsequently, Sivaramakrishnan represented India in nine Tests, 16 ODIs, and played 76 first class games.

Prasad, a crafty seamer, first played a Test against England in 1996 at Birmingham, and went to figure in 33 Tests, 161 ODIs and 123 first class games.

Pace bowling all-rounder Agarkar’s Test versus Zimbabwe in Harare, 1998, was also his first. He turned out in 26 Tests and 191 ODIs, apart from showcasing his skills in 110 first class duels.

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The BCCI’s qualifying yardstick for senior national selectors are: 1: Seven Test matches or, 2: 30 first class matches or, 3. 10 ODIs and 20 first class matches.

And every member of the selection committee should have retired from the game five years previously.

The men’s selection panel will appoint the captain for the team, who shall be an ex-Officio member of the committee. The captain, however, shall not be entitled to vote. In the event of there being an equality of votes in the appointment of the captain, the chairperson will have the casting vote.

Indeed, the Board rules have made Sivaramakrishnan favourite for the chairman’s job; he is the senior-most according to its own laws.  Ajit Agarkar donned the Test cap only in the late 90s and Venkatesh Prasad, who made his Test debut in the mid-90s, has completed one and a half years as a BCCI junior selector which leave his position in the senior panel a tad uncertain.   

The three remaining selectors, Sarandeep Singh, Devang Gandhi and Jatin Paranjpe, represented India much later than Siva. Jatin, in fact, played only ODIs.

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