JK's Ranji Trophy Relegation: Stakeholders blame 'flawed' team selection

JK's Ranji Trophy Relegation: Stakeholders blame 'flawed' team selection

Experts and stakeholders have blamed “flawed selection policies” for the team’s debacle at the national level, sparing the cricketers of the criticism.

Jammu & Kashmir cricket team’s stay in the elite ‘A’ group of the coveted Ranji Trophy tournament proved short-lived after they were relegated by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) owing to their poor performance in this year’s campaign.

The team had put but a brilliant show in the previous Ranji season, on the basis of which they had been grouped alongside top domestic teams including Mumbai and Karnataka.

 

However, the team had to face relegation after putting up a disastrous show in the recently concluded campaign.

 

Experts and stakeholders have blamed “flawed selection policies” for the team’s debacle at the national level, sparing the cricketers of the criticism.

 

They also hold lack of home advantage, travel fatigue and ‘failure of the seniors to rise to the occasion on critical junctures’, responsible for the poor show.

 

However according to them the biggest reason for failure of the team has been inconsistent selection policy “in which no player was allowed to settle down as a result of which the team failed to find the perfect combination”.

 

Former JK player and Coach, Abdul Qayoom Bagaw, said: “I have been the coach and captain of the team but I have never seen in eight matches 26 different players being used. It shows that the team was never settled or was not allowed to settle down by the selectors who work under the shadow of J&K Cricket Association (JKCA) bigwigs”.

 

Chief Administrative Officer JKCA, Saleem Khan echoed the words of the Bagaw, saying the selection policy should come under scrutiny.

 

“The team was never allowed to settle down; even managers were changed on regular intervals. In the later stages of the event, the team management was more interested in returning home rather than concentrating on cricket. I will never blame players but only the JKCA and its selectors. They should take responsibility for the failure of the team to sustain in the group,” he said.

 

 

Meanwhile, JKCA Joint Secretary, Idrees Gandroo alleged that the selectors and the General Secretary of the Association made decisions about selection matters themselves and no other official was ever taken on board.

 

“We were never taken on board when the changes were either discussed or made. They were unilateral decisions taken by the General Secretary and selectors. I personally feel the team was never allowed to settle down. The other reason for not sustaining in the elite group is lack of fitness levels of our players and special attention needs to be focussed on that in future”.

 

Some of the top current Ranji cricketers have also come out openly on social media to blame the selectors for the outcome and ‘putting JK cricket on a downslide’.

 

“Feeling really pained for my team. It took us four years to build a winning team and someone, who has never been an honest selector (which I have always said at all platforms), finally succeeded in breaking it this season despite a great show by the team in Vijay Hazare trophy and first 4 Ranji matches.

 

Congratulations to him for getting his long desired mission accomplished,” wrote pacer Samiullah Beigh on his Facebook page.

 

With JK being relegated from the top group and all the hype that it had generated after historic opening win against Mumbai, cricket pundits and followers back in Valley have expressed disappointment over the teams’ poor show.

 

“After Mumbai win we expected the team to do very well, but it was very disappointing for us to see them relegated”, said Afaq Ahmad, an avid JK follower.

 

Pertinently, JK finished the 2014-15 Ranji season at the bottom of the points table, with 12 points, after playing eight matches in which they lost three, won one and drew four.