Pankaj Singh © Getty Images
Pankaj Singh made his debut for India in England in 2014 © Getty Images

Rajasthan captain Pankaj Singh has stated that he will not leave the sinking ship and change teams despite the Rajasthan Ranji Trophy team likely to miss out the 2015 season. Pankaj led the way for his team in asking for the Rajasthan Ranji Trophy team to be a part of India’s upcoming domestic season. According to a report in Indian Express, Pankaj is said to have brought together not only the Rajasthan Ranji team but also the age-group teams and women’s team from his state in order to appeal to the High Court, who was scheduled to meet to decide their fate for the 2015 Indian domestic season.

“Time is running out. There are a lot of things to do, the team needs to be selected. Only one week is left for the start of the women’s tournament. And three weeks for ours. Please find a solution to this deadlock so that we are able to play in the coming season,” said Pankaj. When asked about whether he considered leaving Rajasthan for another side, Pankaj responded saying, “Offers are there. And sometimes you do get tempted. But then you look at these players. They would be crushed and demoralised if I did that. I will stay on and fight with them.”

The right-arm pacer who made his Test debut for India in the ill-fated tour of England in 2014 continued, “At least there should be cricket so that these cricketers don’t suffer. I appeal to the court to do what they did last year.” Even during the 2014 season, the Lalit Modi controversy meant that RCA was suspended by BCCI. It is ironic that Rajasthan have had such trouble recently, given that they won the Ranji Trophy twice in succession earlier in the decade.

Rajasthan veteran Vineet Saxena said, “You need to practice as a team to play and perform as a team. When we won the Ranji Trophy in 2010 and 2011, our eason had begun almost four months before our first Ranji game…Obviously money is a big thing. But so is the opportunity to play big crunch games when everyone is watching you. Look at Karun Nair, he had a decent Ranji season till hte final, and then he scored a triple hundred. No amount of money can beat that. And he is reaping rich rewards. By going deep into a tournament you set yourself up for such chances.”