Gautam Gambhir (left), Amit Mishra, Ishant Sharma and MS Dhoni (right) were first tested on Bangladesh tours © Getty Images & AFP
The Indian selectors have included three debutants for their upcoming tour of Bangladesh. Throughout the years, the Indians have had uncapped players tour Bangladesh, and make their debuts in the country. Sudatta Mukherjee creates an XI of such players — some of whom have gone on to make it big, while some others have been lost in wilderness.
On Wednesday, May 28, the Indian selectors announced the Indian squads to tour Bangladesh and England. Leading the team in Bangladesh will be Suresh Raina. India play three One-Day Internationals at Mirpur Stadium, Dhaka. The squad includes three uncapped players in the form of Parvez Rasool, Kedar Jadhav, and Akshar Patel.
Over the years, Indian selectors have sent a lot of uncapped players to Bangladesh and the inclusion of the trio does not come as a surprise. Let us look at an XI of these players.
Gautam Gambhir: The Indian opener, whose last Test series was the horror tour of Australia 2011-12, has been picked up for the tour to England, coming July. Gambhir’s career started more than a decade back in Bangladesh, when India had toured the country for the tri-nation TVS Cup. The Delhi southpaw played all the five ODIs. He opened the batting with Virender Sehwag and scored a hard-fought 11 runs from 22 balls.
In the three-match ODI series against Bangladesh, India have three players who could make their debut: Parvez Rasool (left), Akshar Patel (centre) and Kedar Jadhav © IANS & PTI
Shiv Sunder Das: The last cricketer from Odisha to don the international cap for India and one of those players who has played more Test matches than ODIs, Shiv Sunder Das, was at his time regarded as an upcoming Test opener for India. In late, 2000, India toured Bangladesh to play only one Test. Along with Das, Saba Karim and Zaheer Khan also made their Test debut. India won the match largely due to Sunil Joshi’s eight-wicket haul in the match. Das was also influential in taking five catches. The opener scored 29 and an unbeaten 22, in a match which had the unique record of all Bangladesh batsmen scoring less individual runs in the second innings compared to their first innings.
Hemang Badani: Months after the infamous match-fixing scandal had broken out, India toured Bangladesh for the Asia Cup 2000. In the second match of the Asia Cup between India and Bangladesh, newly appointed skipper Sourav Ganguly and Indian selectors decided to call up Hemang Badani to fill in the gap left by Jadeja. India won the toss and elected to bat. Thiru Kumaran’s three-wicket haul Tendulkar and Ganguly opened the batting for India, but, the former was dismissed by Mushfiqur Rahman, just when the duo seem to have settled down. Next came Badani and held the fort with Ganguly, who steered India to an eight wickets win. Badani managed to score 35 runs from 51 balls.
Abhijit Kale: One the pillars of Maharashtra’s middle-order, Abhijit Kale made his ODI debut against Bangladesh in 2003. Kale came in to bat at No 6 and could not manage more than 10.
MS Dhoni: India’s most successful captain and one of the greatest ODI finishers, MS Dhoni had made his ODI debut against Bangladesh in the 2004-05 series. He could not manage to score a single run, as he was ran-out by Tapash Baisya. Things have somewhat changed since then.
India’s World T20 2007 hero Joginder Sharma made his ODI debut in Bangladesh © Getty Images
Joginder Sharma: The man who bowled the last ball of the ICC World T20 2007 that dismissed Misbah-ul-Haq and had helped India win the inaugural T20 World Cup, made his international debut in the same match as Dhoni. He scored five runs and took the wicket of Mohammad Ashraful.
Amit Mishra: The leg-spinner made his international debut with Jacques Rudolph in Bangladesh in the same match. Playing in the TVS tri-nation series, Mishra made his debut in the second match of the series against South Africa at Dhaka. The spinner managed to pick up only one wicket as India won by 153 runs.
Rahul Sanghvi: The current Mumbai Indians team manager, Rahul Sanghvi made his international debut based on a List A record he made in the season of 1997-98 (he still holds the record of best bowling figures for the format eight for 15 against Himachal Pradesh at Una). Sanghvi made his ODI debut in Bangladesh against Pakistan but went wicketless in the match.
Ishant Sharma: The lanky Indian seamer Ishant Sharma made his Test debut in Bangladesh in the second Test in 2007. He picked up only one wicket, that of Mashrafe Mortaza. Seven years later his performance has not improved significantly.
Amit Bhandari made his ODI debut in 2000 © AFP
Amit Bhandari: The Delhi pacer made his ODI debut against Pakistan in the Asia Cup 2000 match at Dhaka, which saw India lose by 44 runs and getting eliminated from the tournament. Even though he picked up two wickets of Wasim Akram and Abdul Razzaq, Indian batmen could not manage achieve the target of 296. Bhandari was unbeaten at the end of the match.
Aavishkar Salvi made his debut in 2003 © AFP
Aavishkar Salvi: The Mumbai bowler with a run-up based on Glenn McGrath’s, Salvi had made his international debut against Bangladesh in 2003. In a match dominated by bowlers, Salvi took two wickets as Zaheer Khan registered a four-wicket haul to help India win by 200 runs.
(Sudatta Mukherjee is a reporter with CricketCountry. Other than writing on cricket, she spends penning random thoughts on her blog and produces weekly posts on new food joints at Whopping Weekends. She played Table Tennis for University of Calcutta. When she is not writing, you will catch her at a movie theatre or watching some English serial on her laptop. Her Twitter id is @blackrosegal)