Probably stung by the string of Test defeats in England and Australia, the BCCI seems to have hastily arranged a tour of West indies for the India A team. The series which begins in Barbados from 2nd June will consist of three four-day matches, three one-day matches and two Twenty20s.
Cheteshwar Pujara, the man most people back to take over the number three position from Rahul Dravid will be leading the side. This series would be a very crucial one for him as he tries to make a bid for the Test team following a frustrating year where he fought off a knee injury and disappointing form. Wicket-keeper batsman Wriddhiman Saha would be his deputy. Other players in the team with prior international experience are Abhinav Mukund, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, RP Singh, Manoj Tiwary, Rahul Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Ashok Dinda.
Robin Bisht who made a name for himself in the Ranji Trophy for Rajasthan this year with heavy scoring gets rewarded for his consistency. Bhuvneshwar Kumar who has been the lynchpin of the Uttar Pradesh attack for quite some time now too makes the cut. However, a few eyebrows would be raised when one reads the names of the likes of Jalaj Saxena, Akshay Darekar, Shami Ahmed in the squad. Saxena is a part time off spinner and not a front line batsmen either, and his selection hints at attempts to please the various associations in the country. Akshay Darekar from Maharashtra was the leading wicket taker in the plate divison last year and gets picked ahead of Amit Mishra, Pragyan Ojha, Piyush Chawla et al. Shami Ahmed has had moderate success this year and has been marked out as a player for the future.
Some of the other notable omissions from the team are Subramaniam Badrinath, who keeps getting overlooked. TP Sudhindra who was the best bowler of the Ranji Trophy this year, and Pankaj Singh who has lead the wicket takers list for a long time in domestic cricket too would have reason to feel disappointed.