Jalaj Saxena has been going through a dilemma in Indian Cricket. Here's a 31-year-old cricketer, who is about to receive the Madhavrao Scindia Award in the 2017-18 season Board of Control for Cricket in India(BCCI) awards, for his 49 wickets for Madhya Pradesh in the recently concluded Indian domestic first-class season and has been honoured with the Lala Amarnath Award for statistically being the best all-rounder in the Ranji Trophy for the third time in the last four years but has been far from an International call-up for the country.
Despite his very good numbers, the selection committee has always had a better player to choose and Jalaj couldn't even make it to the India A team that was selected for the tour of England recently.
It has made him question whether he is good enough to play for India at all and has hurt him deeply. He was recently quoted saying, “You are giving an award but there is no reward. If I don’t get an answer from the BCCI about why I haven’t got even an India A call in the last four years, then what’s the point of giving me awards for the last four years. This only seems more like an insult to me then. I’m depressed.”
“Everyone asks me the BCCI has been giving you an award every year for the last four years but you still don’t seem good enough to play at a higher level. I feel humiliated,”
He has even called a selector in the past but he didn't get a reply. He recalls, “Maybe he didn’t have my number. I’m the highest wicket-taker and have been performing consistently for past many years now. I just wanted to know the reason for not being picked for India A and Irani Trophy,”
“This is an injustice. The least they can do is tell me once and for all that they won’t pick me. I have been waiting to hear from them one way or the other for four years,”
It reflects a deeper issue in Indian Cricket, there are a lot of players doing well in the Ranji Trophy but they aren't always ripe for the International game.
(Inputs from Indian Express)