Special Correspondent

  • The book hasn't come out yet; has anyone read it? I have to read it to form my judgment: Kirmani
  • They should be paid and made accountable. Selectors shouldn't just be honorary: Chetan Chauhan
  • He (Wright) should have said it then and there: Azharuddin
  • The book hasn't come out yet; has anyone read it? I have to read it to form my judgment: Kirmani
  • They should be paid and made accountable. Selectors shouldn't just be honorary: Chetan Chauhan

    CHENNAI: Former Indian cricket coach John Wright's views on the flaws in the selection system in his book Indian Summers, yet to be launched here, have already provoked sharp reactions. Amidst former cricketers accusing Wright of spinelessness, and an intention to gain cheap publicity for the book, came a voice of reason.

    Former India wicketkeeper and one-time chairman of the Selection Committee, Syed Kirmani said, "everyone has his opinions. The book hasn't come out yet; has anyone read it? I have to read it to form my judgment."

    Kirmani, however, felt the selectors shouldn't be accused of bias because they knew players of their zone better than those of other zones, and it was natural to push for them.

    Make it professional

    Former opener Chetan Chauhan, who was also a selector, said it was time the job was made professional. "They should be paid and made accountable. Selectors shouldn't just be honorary," he said. Kirmani, meanwhile, said the selectors should watch more domestic cricket, and not rely only on statistics.

    Former Indian captain Mohammad Azharuddin said, "when I was there, nothing like that (regionalism) happened. He (Wright) should have said it then and there. Saying it four or five years later, what is the point? I feel it's not right. If he does feel strongly, he should have mentioned during his tenure."

    The three men were in the city on Sunday to support the inter-zonal veterans tournament, and to conduct the workings of the Board for Veterans Cricket in India (BVCI). They weighed in on the Sourav Ganguly issue, saying he would need to ride his luck to make it back to the side.

    Ganguly `humiliated'

    Chauhan, president of the BVCI, said he felt Ganguly had been "humiliated". He added that the selectors should have treated him like the Australians had treated Steve Waugh, "giving him one last series, and thank you very much".

    All three said the key to doing well in the 2007 World Cup would be to find the right blend of youth and experience. Azharuddin said India's pace-bowling department was in a healthy state. The "over-worked" Irfan Pathan drew mixed reactions. While Chauhan said pushing him up and down the batting order had affected his bowling, Kirmani questioned the need for a player to over-stretch himself during practice.

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