Mumbai’s Abhishek Nayar, who was yesterday chosen to lead India ‘A’ in the three and four-day games against New Zealand ‘A’ starting August 31 in Visakhapatnam, is also hopeful of a fruitful second chance.
Dhawan has been on song ever since he made a comeback to the Indian team after two years. The Delhi southpaw made immediate impact with his record-breaking 187 on Test debut against Australia at Mohali in March this year.
Mishra, who made his ODI debut in 2003, was recalled to the Indian team for the Zimbabwe series after last playing a one-day match in 2011 in the Caribbean. The leg-spinner equalled Javagal Srinath’s record of most wickets (18) in a bilateral competition.
Although Nayar made his ODI debut in July 2009 against West Indies, the Mumbai all-rounder did not get a chance to prove his worth. In the first two games Nayar did not get a chance to bat.
His next and only opportunity came after a couple of months against the same opponents in Johannesburg, but Nayar was stranded on zero with India winning the game.
No doubt, Nayar, who will turn 30 in October, is banking heavily on the opportunity to lead India ‘A’. “Personally, it is an important series for me to get back into reckoning (for Team India). Every game, every series is important for a cricketer,” Nayar told MiD DAY after the announcement yesterday.
A fantastic Ranji Trophy season helped Nayar fetch the highest price ($675,000) for an Indian in the Indian Premier League-VI auction. However, the Pune Warriors player could not replicate the same form in the IPL.
Yesterday, Sandeep Patil & Co provided Nayar with another chance to stake his claim for the top level. “This is going to be a huge step forward,” said Nayar, who also led Ranji champs Mumbai in the Irani Cup against Rest of India.
Nayar, however, was surprised on being appointed India ‘A’ captain. “I was not expecting to lead the team. But I have always enjoyed captaining. I enjoy the extra responsibility.
It is a huge opportunity for everyone so, it is important to keep the right atmosphere,” said Nayar, who recently returned from a two-month club cricket stint in England.