The key appointment at the Mumbai meeting will be Krishnamachari Srikkanth’s successor as chief of the panel.
Abey Kuruvilla (West Zone), Mohinder Amarnath (North Zone), Roger Binny (South Zone) are almost certain to be retained. But there are some doubts concerning Central Zone’s representation. The situation is trickier in East Zone.
While Central has been mulling over a few names like Gyanendra Pandey, Gagan Khoda and Sunil Chaturvedi, it is learnt that there is complete disagreement among East Zone’s affiliates — Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB), Orissa Cricket Association and the Jharkhand State Cricket Association (JSCA).
Jagmohan Dalmiya-led CAB is all set to propose former Bengal all-rounder Arup Bhattacharya’s name, but it is unlikely that the BCCI will give him the nod since he has played only 48 first-class matches. Plan B for CAB is to recommend former Indian wicketkeeper-batsman Deep Dasgupta and opener Devang Gandhi. But there is no guarantee that CAB’s recommendations will be accepted as Raja Venkat’s replacement in the panel. The OCA has already objected to CAB’s choice. As a counter move, the Ranjib Biswal-led OCA proposed former India seamer Debasis Mohanty to replace Venkat.
“Venkat was nominated from CAB in the last term, so now it should be our turn to nominate someone. Also, Mohanty’s cricketing credentials are much better than Bhattacharya’s,” a top OCA official told MiD DAY yesterday. Mohanty played two Tests and 45 ODIs for India from 1997 to 2001.
Besides Orissa, Jharkhand have also jumped onto the bandwagon, naming former India seamer Subroto Banerjee as their candidate.
However, CAB is going ahead with Bhattacharya’s name. It is learnt that the association is under some political pressure.
Dalmiya’s men though are unaffected by OCA and JSCA’s candidates. It is learnt that CAB has already managed support from two other East Zone affiliates — Assam and Tripura.