Wriddhiman Saha: Ganguly assured me of my place; Dravid wanted me to retire

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Wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha was among the four India players to be dropped from the Test squad for the home series against Sri Lanka. Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ishant Sharma were also axed as India named their Test squad for the series.

With Rishabh Pant taking over as the new No.1 wicketkeeper, Saha’s place had been under scrutiny of late, especially with the rise of KS Bharat as a backup wicketkeeping option with better batting form behind him.

However, Saha states in an interview with Times of India that Sourav Ganguly, the BCCI President and Saha’s Bengal teammate at one time, had assured him that “as long as he is at the helm of the BCCI” Saha had nothing to worry.

What Ganguly and Dravid told Wriddhiman Saha

“When I hit an unbeaten 61 taking a pain-killer in the first Test against New Zealand in Kanpur last November, Dadi (as Sourav was referred to by Bengal players) congratulated me over Whatsapp. He even mentioned that I should not worry about anything so long as he is at the helm of the BCCI. Such a message from the board president really boosted my confidence. But I failed to understand why everything changed so fast,” Saha stated in the interview.

Saha, like the others, were asked to play the Ranji Trophy to regain his place in the side, but Saha did not, something Chetan Sharma, the chief selector, expressed concerns over. Saha had skipped the series owing to personal reasons which he later revealed to be related to his wife’s health.

While there were assurances from Ganguly at one point, Saha says that the new management under Rahul Dravid as head coach told him that he wouldn’t be considered henceforth. He even stated that the Indian head coach had suggested to him to take retirement.

“Yes, the team management told me that I would not be considered henceforth. I could not tell this so long as I was part of the India team setup,” he said on Saturday. “Even coach Rahul Dravid suggested that I think about taking retirement,” he added.

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