Where is the talent pool?

But the chilling fact is that the selectors are presently facing a concrete barrier that is too strong to knock down in order to pull out some genuine, ripe talent. It appears that the Sandeep Patil-led selection committee was left with no option but to stick to the same team that lost at the Wankhede Stadium in last week’s Test against England.

The selection committee’s helplessness reflects a system that is in dire need of change. There have been changes, but they are not universally accepted by cricket pundits who, most of the time, are proved right. Take for example the Ranji Trophy format, which was changed this year. In the recent past, teams were divided through the Elite and Plate divisions. Now, strong teams face very weak teams more often, as a result there are plenty of lopsided contests. This particular dagger has another sharp side to it - placid wickets. Batsmen of several domestic teams have had their Christmas come early through flat tracks much to the chagrin of the ever-toiling bowlers.

Patil’s committee seems to be suffering from the work, poor work to be specific, of the previous selection committee led by K Srikkanth. Despite several opportunities, Srikkanth’s panel failed to inject adequate youth which would A) Be given a good chance to blossom and B) Provide options for the near future.

It is imperative that Patil’s committee recognises the problem and work for a better future as soon as the series is over. All is not lost in the series and may the best team win it, but India must end up winning this war — the war within — to save their cricket from further ridicule. 

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