Why was Hanuma Vihari excluded in the squad against NZ? Sunil Gavaskar explains
Jaipur -Though cricket fans, experts all over the country are wondering what could have led BCCI to not include Hanuma Vihari in the Test squad against New Zealand, former cricketer, and commentator, Sunil Gavaskar feels that is an extremely natural call.
The Andhra Pradesh-born cricketer has been excellent with the bat in recent years especially in the longest format hence there was a tone of surprise among the cricket enthusiasts who felt that Vihari should have been an easy pick.
The 16- member squad misses a lot of big names including the national skipper Virat Kohli. One of the possible reasons for his exclusion might be because the 28-year-old cricketer did not participate in the recently concluded Indian Premier League.
Gavaskar explained that his exclusion was not at all surprising for him because the cricketer did not play any cricket in the interim. The expert also went on to explain that he did not even play IPL and has been out of sight for over three-four months so it was obvious for him to not be selected.
Sunil Gavaskar Explained:
He also added, “On the other hand, the others who have been selected have had some cricket, not necessarily Test cricket, so maybe that’s the reason why they came into the picture.”
Unlike his other national teammates, the 28-year-old didn’t take part in the recent Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 season.
“I really was not surprised to be honest because he hasn’t played any cricket in the interim. He hasn’t played in the IPL so hasn’t had any cricket under his belt in the last three or four months”, said Gavaskar.
“On the other hand, the others who have been selected have had some cricket, not necessarily Test cricket, so maybe that’s the reason why they came into the picture“, he further added. How one performs in the IPL often becomes a criteria for the selection committee to make inclusion or exclusion from the squad and since Viahari did not play IPL, his selection was never on cards, hinted Gavaskar. Ajinkya Rahane will be leading the team in absence of Kohli while Cheteshwar Pujara will be the vice captain of the team in the upcoming series.