The Indian selectors have named the 15-member squad for the upcoming World Cup. While both, all-rounder Hardik Pandya and opener K.L. Rahul, are part of the squad, they are yet to get clearance from BCCI ombudsman D.K. Jain for making inappropriate comments in a television chat show.
The duo had appeared before Jain separately. While Pandya met him on April 9, Rahul met him in Mumbai on April 10. The World Cup squad was announced on April 15.
Speaking to IANS, one of the three members of the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) said that it was indeed surprising that the ombudsman was yet to hand over the report of the inquiry. The matter was handed to Jain by the CoA.
“We were hoping to get a report from the ombudsman, but haven’t received anything as yet. The team for the World Cup has been picked and the fate of the players still hangs in balance.”
“Yes, they have served a temporary suspension and were called back from Australia, but you cannot decide on behalf of the ombudsman. If the ombudsman feels that they have paid for their act, then also a clean chit does have to officially come from him,” the member explained.
Another BCCI functionary said that if the two players are handed any form of suspension, the selectors will have to bring in players who are on the stand-by list.
“Well, the Indian board does have the provision to make changes to the squad till May 23 without needing the approval of the ICC’s Event Technical Committee. If a scenario does arise wherein these players are ruled out, then the selectors will pick from the stand-by players. Hopefully such a situation won’t come,” the functionary told IANS.
Repeated attempts to get in touch with Jain failed as he didn’t respond to calls or messages.
After speaking to the two cricketers, Jain had said that the players met him and explained themselves and that he would take a decision in due course.