Former Indian captain Sunil Gavaskar has come out hard on the national selectors, saying that a 'deep-set bias' against Mumbai players is denying them the chance to play for the national team.
In a column written for Mid-Day, Gavaskar gave the example of current Mumbai player Siddhesh Lad who has been scoring runs in abundance in Ranji Trophy. He said, "There’s another Mumbai lad who invariably scores when his team is in trouble, and that is Siddhesh Lad, but despite his consistency, he never finds himself even in the ‘A’ teams as the bias against Mumbai players is so deep- set."
Lad has played in 44 First-class games thus far, and has scored runs at an average of 43.39. Gavaskar said he hopes Lad does not end up like Amol Mazumdar, who despite scoring 11,000 First-class runs, never got picked for India's national cricket team.
Gavaskar said, "Let’s hope that he (Siddhesh) doesn’t suffer the same fate as Amol Muzumdar who scored a mountain of runs in First-class cricket but never got the India cap. It’s not the individual, but Indian cricket that suffered with such biased and myopic decisions. Can 2018- 19 see a change? We shall soon see."
The veteran of Indian cricket also blasted the selectors for demeaning the value of the Ranji Trophy by sending as many as 35 top players of the country on overseas tour with India and India A sides. He said, "With almost 35 top players out overseas on India and India ‘A’ duty, the national championship for the Ranji Trophy is considerably diluted. This is once again an indication of the misconception that the India team is Indian cricket continues."