CT 2017: Mohammed Shami is an automatic choice in Indian team if fit, says Sourav Ganguly

IANS, May, 03 2017

Kolkata: Former India skipper Sourav Ganguly on Wednesday put his weight behind fit-again pacer Mohammed Shami, saying if fit, the Bengal bowler is an automatic choice in the Indian team going into the ICC Champions Trophy.

Ganguly backed his statement by underlining Shami's performance against Sunrisers Hyderabad, saying his spell was one of the reasons behind Delhi Daredevils notching up a much-needed win on Tuesday at the Feroz Shah Kotla in the ongoing Indian Premier League.

File photo of Mohammed Shami. Reuters

File photo of Mohammed Shami. Reuters

"Shami fared quite well in yesterday's match. The ball to get rid of (David) Warner was a very good one.

"If he is fit, he is well and truly an automatic choice in the Indian team. No second thoughts on that," Ganguly said on the sidelines of the Kolkata Knight Riders-Rising Pune Supergiant game at the Eden Gardens.

Finishing with two wickets - that of Sunrisers skipper Warner and Kane Williamson, Shami conceded 36 runs off his four overs and was adjudged Man of the Match in the DareDevils' six-wicket victory.

Doubts remain over India's participation in next month's Champions Trophy. But if they do participate in the ICC event, it wouldn't be unwise to select Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir as a backup opener, said Ganguly.

"Gambhir is in good form, so it wouldn't be a bad idea to keep him in the fray. Besides, Lokesh Rahul too is not available at the moment," he said.

About Royal Challengers Bangalore's disappointing campaign this term, Ganguly said: "They lost momentum at the start itself and it's really difficult to recover, considering the format of the game. You just don't get enough time.

"Also, some of their main players (Virat Kohli and A.B. de Villiers) weren't available during the initial stages, which let them down. Moreover, having big names in the squad doesn't always mean that you will do well all the time."

Meanwhile, it was also learnt that the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB), of which Ganguly is the president, is mulling covering up the galleries that have no shades yet, like the J and D blocks.

Published Date: May 03, 2017 | Updated Date: May 03, 2017

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3395 110
3 England 4097 105
4 Australia 3087 100
5 New Zealand 3114 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 5957 119
2 Australia 5505 117
3 India 4579 114
4 England 5645 113
5 New Zealand 5123 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 1625 125
2 England 1962 123
3 Pakistan 2417 121
4 West Indies 2222 117
5 India 2183 115