Mumbai selectors face clubs’ ire after Ranji Trophy debacle
The future of Ajit Agarkar, Nilesh Kulkarni, Ravi Thakker and Sunil More as selectors of Mumbai senior and U-23 teams will be decided by a special general body meeting convened after 36 clubs claimed they’re incompetent. It has been alleged that Agarkar and Co. don't watch any local games and that the teams are picked by the coaches. The clubs want the selectors to be removed with immediate effect but as the SGM has been called by only 39 out of the 329 MCA members, it's learnt the selectors are likely to be asked to continue.
"No selector watches local games, we don’t know what parameters have been set for a player to be picked in the Mumbai side. There are performers in local cricket who are time and again ignored. Last year selection matches were held at Wankhede Stadium, not a single selector was present there. We have called an SGM and if we get three-fourth majority in the meeting, the MCA will have to change the selectors," Khodada Yazdegard of Parsee Gymkhana club told The Indian Express.
Yazdegard, who called for a motion on the selection committee, says the constitution allows its members to call for a special AGM. Since the MCA doesn't have any office-bearers and is run by an ad-hoc committee, the members have chosen to file a motion for the immediate removal of the selectors.
The SGM has a three-point agenda: "The motion is being moved because: The selectors never watched MCA Club matches. Selection for Madhav Mantri under-23 tournament which was played in May 2018 was done by coaches appointed for the four teams, instead of selectors. Players who performed exceedingly well in 2017/18 season were neglected and not selected in 2018/19 probable list. In view of the several irregularities in selection of players, the above resolutions are proposed."
However, the resolution taken by the SGM will be sent to the ad-hoc committee which will take the final call on whether to accept it or not. Considering the numbers, it's likely that Agarkar and Co. might survive. The members' ire came after Mumbai didn't qualify for the Ranji Trophy knock-outs and was even fighting to avoid relegation at one stage.
Around 25 players played for the Mumbai Ranji Trophy team and seven players had their debut domestic season as the team saw a lot of chopping and changing. Ranji coach Vinayak Samant had even said that the young players don't value the Mumbai cap.