Selectors did not communicate with Nair, Vijay; management not pleased: report
Karun Nair and Murali Vijay

With batmen Karun Nair and Murali Vijay expressing their disappointment over selectors’ lack of communication following their ouster from the Indian team, it has been learnt that the Indian team management is furious over the confusion surrounding the matter.

After dropping Nair, Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan from the two-Test series against the West Indies, the selectors and sources close to them were positive that they had communicated with the axed cricketers, something that was also confirmed by the CoA, but the two batsmen stated otherwise, adding uncertainty to the matter and leaving the management displeased. As per a report in the Times of India, no meeting has taken place between the selectors and those dropped from the Indian setup, and nothing has been done from the CoA’s end to resolve it either.

“Someone is clearly not telling the truth here. Now, either it’s the players or it’s the selectors. If they (BCCI/CoA) want to understand this better, why not just make the captain, coach, the senior cricketers and selectors sit across the table and hear them out? It’ll be immediately clear who is lying and who is not,” TOI’s sources said.

Following Vijay’s statement that he was not addressed after being dropped, chairman of selectors MSK Prasad was livid and had said that he and his colleague Devang Gandhi had informed the opener about the reasons behind his exclusion. While another BCCI official, on condition of anonymity, said that Vijay had not given the full picture of his story.

“All these are baseless reports,” Prasad had said last week. “With regard to the non-communication with Murali Vijay after dropping him, I am equally surprised why he has said this while my colleague and selector on call Devang Gandhi had clearly informed him about the reasons why he was dropped.”

However, the daily confirmed that not only has there been no communication between the players and the selectors, nothing has been done to oversee the confusion. Besides Vijay and Nair, even Rohit Sharma, who was reportedly expected to play the England Tests, hasn’t been contacted.

The matter gained steam when Nair, India’s second triple-centurion in Tests, was made to sit out and Hanuma Vihari, a secondary addition in the side, played the final Test against England at Lord’s. Vijay, who had a poor string of scores, first in South Africa and later in the first two Tests in Edgbaston and Lord’s. He went on to score two half-centuries and a hundred in three county outings for Essex. But like Nair, he too did not find a place for the series against West Indies.

Despite the selectors’ repeated claims that the players were contacted, the belief is that at no point was it considered a priority. “It took a Mayank Agarwal forever to find a place in the Test squad despite all the scoring he did in the domestic circuit. But all that the selector is bothered with is in conveying that cricketers are being communicated with. That’s not the case,” the sources added.

It has also been learnt by the daily that the BCCI has not sent notices to any of these cricketers for sharing their thoughts with the media, but confrontation regarding the same might happen soon.

“Vijay and Karun didn’t exactly do the right thing by speaking on selection policy. That is a breach of central contract. As per the central contract, no player can speak about a just-concluded tour for 30 days. There is a COA (Committee of Administrators) meeting in Hyderabad on October 11 and this issue will be raised there,” a senior BCCI official had said.