Sunil Joshi (Photo Credit: PTI file)
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Wednesday appointed former India spinner Sunil Joshi chairman of the national selection panel, replacing MSK Prasad, and picked ex-pacer Harvinder Singh for a place in the five-member group. The CAC, comprising Madan Lal, RP Singh and Sulakshana Naik, picked the two selectors with Joshi replacing South Zone representative MSK Prasad. In an unprecedented decision, the BCCI said the CAC will review the panel's performance after one year and make recommendations accordingly.
"The committee recommended Mr Sunil Joshi for the role of chairman of the senior men's selection committee. The CAC will review the candidates after a one-year period and make the recommendations to the BCCI," read a statement from BCCI Secretary Jay Shah.
Harvinder was chosen from central the zone and replaces Gagan Khoda in the panel. The existing members of the selection panel are Jatain Paranjpe, Devang Gandhi and Sarandeep Singh.
"We have picked the best guys for the job," Lal said. The CAC had shortlisted five candidates for interviews -- Joshi, Harvinder, Venkatesh Prasad, Rajesh Chauhan and L S Sivaramakrishnan -- from a list of 40 applicants.
The likes of Ajit Agarkar and Nayan Mongia did not even make the short-list but the former will be back in contention after Paranjpe's term ends in September along with Gandhi and Sarandeep.
Joshi's selection from South Zone and Harvinder getting picked from Central Zone also shows that the Board has stuck with the zonal policy. Their predecessors, Prasad and Khoda, who were appointed back in 2015 and given an extension last November.
The 49-year-old Joshi played 15 Tests and 69 ODIs between 1996 and 2001, taking 41 and 69 wickets respectively. Harvinder, who is 42, represented India in three Tests and 16 ODIs between 1998 and 2001, taking four and 24 scalps respectively.
The playing credentials of the Prasad-led panel were often questioned and this time too, the CAC decided to pick Joshi and Harvinder over more experienced candidates. In the media interaction held after the announcement, Lal said the BCCI office-bearers, including president Sourav Ganguly, gave the CAC a free hand in choosing the candidates.
"Ganguly did not even say a word," added Lal.
(With PTI inputs)