New Delhi: Legendary India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has slammed the selectors over the non-selection of Mumbai batter Sarfaraz Khan for the first two Tests against Australia, saying cricketers should be judged solely for their on-field performances, not by their size or shape.
Sarfaraz has been a prolific run-getter in domestic cricket, especially in first-class matches. In the last two Ranji Trophy seasons, he has scored 1,910 runs in just 12 games, averaging 136.42.
Tuesday, he scored another century, 125, against Delhi in a Ranji Trophy Group B match, making it the batter’s 13th first-class ton and third in the ongoing edition of the prestigious tournament, making people question why an India call-up eludes Sarfaraz.
“If you are looking for only slim and trim guys, then might as well go to a fashion show and find some other models and give a bat and ball in their hands and then improve them. That’s not the way cricket goes.”
“You have cricketers in all shapes and sizes. Don’t go by the size, go by the scores or wickets. He is not staying off the field when he scores a hundred. He is back on the field again. So, all that tells you is that the man is fit,” Gavaskar was quoted as saying by India Today.
Gavaskar went on to say that Sarfaraz isn’t unfit as he’s bringing out the big hundreds every now and then in the Ranji Trophy. “How can you score runs? I think at the end of the day if you are unfit, you aren’t gonna score hundreds.”
“Cricket fitness is the most important thing. Yo-Yo Test can’t be the only criterion. You got to make sure that the man is cricket fit as well. If the person, whoever it is, is cricket fit, then I don’t think it should be any matter.”
Sarfaraz now sits behind only Sir Don Bradman in terms of batting average after 53 first-class innings. Gavaskar concluded by saying that Sarfaraz would soon find his way into India’s Test squad.
“At the moment, sometimes he starts to feel frustrated. What do I need to do? He is scoring runs. He scored triple hundred, and double hundreds, people might say he scored against ordinary attacks.”
“I don’t know, I didn’t see them but then how come the other batsmen in the same team did not get 200 when he scored a triple hundred, or other batsmen did not get a hundred when he got a double hundred?”
“So, for a man or any person who scored these many runs, you have something special to be able to churn out the runs he’s doing so consistently. His time is definitely gonna come. I mean, with the scores he is getting, he has to be pretty much in the frame.”
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