The selection committee headed by former India wicketkeeper MSK Prasad got a lot of flak in the aftermath of India’s semi-final exit in the ICC Cricket World Cup and their subsequent choice of players for the ongoing tour of West Indies.
Some experts even questioned the credentials of the selection committee with respect to their playing careers and few even wondered whether selectors with considerable experience of playing international cricket were more suitable for the job.
Virender Sehwag weighed in on the debate on Wednesday, suggesting that former India skipper and coach Anil Kumble was best suited for the chief selector’s position.
“Anil Kumble should be the selector according to me,” Sehwag said at the launch of ‘The Selectors App’ in New Delhi on Wednesday. “He was the captain of the team and has a very good record. Later as a coach he won us so many series.”
Sehwag felt that selectors need to have good knowledge of the game to take hard decisions and Kumble was the perfect candidate.
He, however, ruled himself out of the race to become a selector. “If you are a selector, then you have a lot of restrictions like you cannot commentate, write columns and then there’s conflict of interest which I don’t understand.
“Conflict of interest as a player is very weird. If players won’t do things for cricket, who will? How does it is matter if I have an academy, a school or position in an association?” he asked.
Sehwag also brushed aside the argument that the absence of a proper No 4 batsman in the batting line-up affected India’s chances at the World Cup.
“Any player is mentally prepared to play anywhere,” he said. “It’s up to the team management how to use each resource. Even Ravindra Jadeja will be ready to bat at No 4. I think no player has ever said that he is made for a certain number.”
Sehwag had previously applied for the India coach job after the 2015 World Cup but when asked whether he was still interested in becoming a coach in the future, he replied in the negative.
“I was asked to apply by joint secretary [late] Dr Sridhar,” he said. “No one asked me to apply this time and by 2021 I don’t know if I will apply. Maybe I’ll be the president of the board so why think of coach.”
Talking about the Board of Control for Cricket in India complying with the National Anti-Doping Agency, Sehwag said that dope tests were always conducted but it is the whereabouts clause that will be a problem.
“Dope tests were always conducted,” he said. “The problem is the whereabouts clause because Indian players don’t know where they will be. How do I tell ICC where I will be in so and so year? The players’ view is also respected by BCCI. Players do not want the whereabouts clause. I also don’t think any player has talked about it. It’s only NADA, WADA and BCCI who are talking,” he added.