Financial Express print this

Saiful Kaiser

The Indians left out Sourav Ganguly from their playing eleven (in fact the poor guy did not even make twelfth man) and included a young fast bowler, R.P. Singh, who took 3 of the 4 Pakistani wickets to fall on the first day of the second Test at Faisalabad.
Why was Ganguly overlooked? Some say, some Indian visitors to Pakistan, former footballers, legends themselves, had brought an autographed bat along to give to the Pakistanis, a gift 'from the city of Sourav'. They say that this was taken as an affront by the powers that be in Indian cricket (read Dravid, Chappell & Co) and they decided to show those poor ex-football greats what they thought of their action, and dumped Ganguly who was according to some planning his swansong with these games in Pakistan.
Others say, and extremely frivolous it sounds no matter what, that Ganguly was given the option that only if he contributed significantly with the bat in Lahore's Gaddafi Stadium would he be considered for the subsequent games, that they were less than pleased with his (purported) refusal to open the innings with Sehwag and least pleased that his gesticulating antics to that end ended up on television which most people back home found extremely distasteful. Ganguly agreed. It was his bad luck that he was not given the chance to show what he could do with the willow. But those people were extremely insensitive and told him that he could curse the weather, their own openers and whoever or whatever he wanted to, but he had not scored a single run so there. Last heard he could not believe they could do this to him.