Varun Aaron got second chance to showcase his pace bowling credentials; after he was named by the Kris Srikanth led selection committee of BCCI to become part of 15 member ODI squad, for the first two one day internationals (ODIs) matches of 5 match ODI series against England team. The players who made it to squad are as follows:
|1||Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain)||Wicket-keeper / Batsman|
|8||Ravindra Jadeja||Bowler – Spinner / Batsman|
|9||R Ashwin||Bowler – Spinner|
|10||Varun Aaron||Bowler – Pacer|
|11||Umesh Yadav||Bowler – Pacer|
|12||R Vinay Kumar||Bowler – Pacer|
|13||Sreenath Aravind||Bowler – Pacer|
|14||Rahul Sharma||Bowler – Spinner|
|15||Praveen Kumar||Bowler – Pacer|
About a month ago, we all thought that Varun would have got an opportunity to debut at the seamer-friendly wickets in England in the recently concluded one-day cricket series. But that did not happen. Indian Team management thought otherwise. Nevertheless, we were not alone in making that presumption; even cricket-experts like former Indian Captain Saurabh Gangulay and pace legend Wasim Akram shared similar thoughts.
Speaking his mind, Saurabh Ganguly commented right after the third ODI, which India lost, “India came so close to winning at The Oval ODI but couldn’t pull it off. But, it was a much better effort than has been seen in the series. The only reason was that the spinners looked like picking up wickets, which proves that if you have a good bowling unit, you can fancy your chances. The problem was, when the seamers came on the pressure on the English batters eased off. Seamers have been a worry for India. If young bowlers are not given the opportunity, India cannot hope to move forward. Munaf and R.P. (Singh) were pedestrian and it’s time to give Varun Aaron a chance in the last two games.”
Now let us quote what Wasim Akram wrote in his popular column, “I sometimes wonder why we name replacements! Is it just to fill the numbers or for a purpose? Naming replacements when a frontline player breaks down must be done with a reason. It is foolish to fly in a deserving youngster and then ask him to carry drinks to the field or bowl at the nets. India have done just that with Varun Aaron. The young bowler has been wasted in England……….I would rather blood Aaron in England because the seaming conditions are ideal for him. It will be silly to give Aaron a start on Indian wickets. On placid tracks where he will get little support, two bad matches in the start of his career can destroy him. In my book, Aaron has a future and India can ill afford to ruin him because the current pace attack is not in good shape and the future doesn’t look bright. I was expecting to see Aaron play the ODIs. This raises questions about the communication between the selectors and the team management.”
The first ODI will be played on 14th October in Hyderabad, while second match will be played on 17th October in Delhi. Both of these pitches are proverbial dust-bowls, where batsmen are more likely to dominate. Probably not a right pitch for a bowler to make a debut. But given the underlying message behind the current selection policy, the Indian Team Management does not have much option but to give Varun Aaron a chance to play and represent India in the forth-coming series against English Cricket Team.
Again we keep our fingers crossed and wish him luck.
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