If someone is fit, age criteria shouldn’t come into play: Sachin opines on Saha vs Pant debate

Former Indian cricketer and a batting legend, Sachin Tendulkar, on Monday opined on an important debate in modern cricket on whether players should be picked on the basis of age or fitness. With the fitness level of players across the world getting better, it is often questioned if seniors are blocking the way for youngsters to break into the scene and establish themselves on the international stage.

In fact, even in the Indian team, there have been questions on whether a young Rishabh Pant should get a longer rope or whether Wriddhiman Saha should don the wicket-keeping gloves in Tests. While Tendulkar doesn’t wish to get into selection policies, he says that fitness should be the criteria, not age.

“Whoever is good should be given a go. It is not about a youngster or such things. If Saha is fit and fit enough to deliver, he should be given a go. Similarly, if Pant is fit, he should be….let the team management decide. I am not saying Saha should be ahead of Pant or Pant should be ahead of Saha. Let the team management decide that.

“If someone is fit, age criteria shouldn’t come into play. So, to cut my answer short, if someone is fit, age criteria should not come into play and the team management should decide whoever needs to play,” he pointed.

Wriddhiman was forced to the sidelines owing to his prolonged struggle with an injury and only made his Test comeback ahead of India World Test Championship campaign last year which had coincided with Pant’s array of poor batting shows. Although the youngster was picked for the West Indies series, Saha replaced him for the home games given the spin-friendly conditions in India. And he performed superbly with captain Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri lauding his Superman-esque efforts. But with India travelling overseas, for the New Zealand series earlier this year, Pant was back in the playing XI.

Courtesy : IANS

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