Former India players Chetan Sharma, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Nayan Mongia and Ajit Agarkar have applied for two positions in the Indian men’s selection committee after the board invited applications last week. PTI reported that two others, the former India and Madhya Pradesh duo of Rajesh Chauhan and Amay Khurasiya, have also thrown their hat into the ring.
The BCCI had earlier announced January 24 as the cut-off date to receive applications. They are yet to release an update on the number of applicants and the interview date. It’s also unclear as to when the new set of selectors, which also includes a new women’s selection panel and a couple of junior men’s selectors, would be appointed.
The position of chairman in the men’s committee is up for grabs with MSK Prasad, the former India wicketkeeper, finishing his four-year term last November. Since then, he has been on an extension along with former India and Rajasthan batsman Gagan Khoda.
Sivaramakrishnan is the oldest among the list of people ESPNcricinfo confirmed to have applied, while Mongia, the former wicketkeeper, has the most Test caps (44). Agarkar, meanwhile, was the last of the lot to retire, in 2013.
As per the rules of the constitution, the person with the most Test caps will be the chairman of the selection committee.
All three have been selectors at their respective state associations. Sivaramakrishanan headed the Tamil Nadu Under-19 selection committee in the early years of this decade. That aside, he has been a broadcaster for two decades and even sat on the ICC Cricket Committee.
Mongia was part of Baroda selection committee in both senior and junior men’s categories while Agarkar was the chairman of Mumbai selection committee for two years between 2017-19.
It is unclear yet as to who would conduct the interviews. As per the BCCI constitution the men’s selectors need to be appointed by a cricket advisory committee (CAC). However, the CAC has been defunct since last November.
Although, as reported recently, three former India players comprising Gautam Gambhir, Madan Lal and Sulakhshana Naik were in the running for the CAC. But the BCCI has not made that decision public yet.
What is also not clear is whether the BCCI would pick the selectors purely on merit and not on the zonal basis, a criteria that was applied for long till it was discarded in 2017 when the board conducted interview for the first time to pick the selection committees.
Additional reporting by Shashank Kishore