Shami Ahmed is a dark horse in India team selection
Bengal medium-pacer Shami Ahmed will be the dark horse when the national selectors meet in Mumbai on July 4 to pick the Sri Lanka-bound squads for the five-match ODI series and lone T20 international fixture
Krishnamachari Srikkanth and his colleagues are also likely to pick 30 probables for the World Twenty20 in September, also in Sri Lanka.
It is learnt that the five wise men — Srikkanth, Mohinder Amarnath, Narendra Hirwani, Surendra Bhave and Raja Venkat — are not that impressed with the performance of India ‘A’ in the West Indies. But the 22-year-old Ahmed seems to have done enough to catch the eyes of the selectors and is almost certain to be among the World T20 probables, if not in the Colombo-bound party.
“Shami Ahmed is a quality bowler and we have been watching him for quite a while. Only thing, he has to take care of is consistency. Age is on his side and so he should try and keep improving with every game. Even if he does not find a place in the Sri Lanka-bound squad, he is surely one for the future,” a source told MiD DAY. Ahmed has bagged 13 wickets in three matches for India ‘A’ in West Indies so far.
As far as the squads are concerned, too many changes aren’t expected, barring a few. The selectors are still clueless on whether Sachin Tendulkar will be available for the tour of Lanka.
However, Virat Kohli is likely to be retained Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s deputy for both the Sri Lanka tour and World Twenty20. “The decision to have Kohli as MS Dhoni’s deputy is a well thought out one and there’s no reason to replace him as he hasn’t done a bad job so far,” the source pointed out.
It may be recalled, Kohli was given the vice-captaincy for the Asia Cup earlier this year, after regular Virender Sehwag opted out of the tour. Gautam Gambhir, who was next in line for the job, was ignored as Srikkanth & Co wanted to invest in youngster Kohli.