New Delhi: With the national selection committee, headed by MSK Prasad, set to meet today to pick the squad for the one-off Test against Bangladesh, wicket-keeper batsman Parthiv Patel may make the cut as the third opener.
After a terrific series against England, Parthiv had earned a lot of praise from the team management and skipper Virat Kohli. This in turn raised questions on who would wear the gloves in the Test against Bangladesh considering that first-choice keeper Wriddhiman Saha is not only fit, but also showed good form with the bat, scoring an unbeaten double hundred to help Rest of India beat Gujarat in the Irani Cup.
While Prasad had already doused the fire by making it clear that Saha is the panel’s preferred choice behind the stumps, it has now been learnt that Parthiv could come into the side just as the third opener behind Murali Vijay and KL Rahul.
Speaking to CricketNext, a source in the BCCI said that considering Shikhar Dhawan’s poor run of scores, Parthiv could well make the cut as the third opener behind Vijay and Rahul.
“See, that is definitely an option that the selectors will discuss when they meet to pick the team. The call of the captain is also very important in these matters. But yes, you cannot pull that out of the equation considering Parthiv’s form,” he said.
Saha was out with tendonitis after the second Test against England in Visakhapatnam and that is when Parthiv made a return to the Test team after a gap of eight years. And Parthiv proved his mettle, scoring two half-centuries against England. He followed it up with scores of 90 and 143 in the Ranji Trophy final.
Back in the Delhi team to play in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, the domestic T20 tournament, Dhawan flopped again as he managed just 30 and 2 respectively against J&K and Punjab.
In fact, the selectors have in recent times gone against the general ploy of picking two openers when playing at home and that was seen in the series against England and New Zealand as they preferred to pick a third opener.
The other players more or less pick themselves as all those out injured during the England Test series — Jayant Yadav, Vijay and Ajinkya Rahane — are back in action. Rahane played in the ODI series while Jayant has plied his trade in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. Vijay was on Monday named as replacement for Dinesh Karthik in the Tamil Nadu squad for the remaining matches in the south-zone leg of the Syed Mushtaq Ali inter-state T20 tournament.