Former Indian captain Mohammad Azharuddin is all set to offer “free expert advice” to the Goa Ranji team after his son Asaduddin was included in the side.
As per a report in IANS, Asaduddin is yet to play a Ranji Trophy match and thus his selection has created a lot of hue and cry in the coastal state’s cricketing circles.
“Because Asaduddin is his son and he is now a part of our team, we will get Azharuddin’s guidance for free. The expert assistance from someone of the stature of Azharuddin, a former India captain, will work wonders for the Goa team and its young cricketers,” Daya Pagi, Goa Cricket Association Secretary, told IANS.
“Asaduddin has been roped in as a guest player. We have not paid a single rupee to him... we are going through a cash crunch and that is why we chose this route,” he added.
Meanwhile, left-arm spinner Shadab Jakati, who has taken 275 wickets for Goa in 92 first-class matches, slammed Asaduddin’s inclusion in the state team.
“Just because (he is the son of former India captain (Mohammad Azharuddin), who was a great player, does that automatically allow for his son to play for Goa?” Jakati told a press conference on Friday.
Jakati, who played nine editions of the Indian Premier League with teams like Chennai Super Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Gujarat Lions, also criticized GCA’s decision.
“He (Asaduddin) is aged 28 and never played a single Ranji trophy match, nor even a first-class match. Even the last match he played for a state was in 2009, that too for Hyderabad Colts team in an invitational tournament. He tried to play for Uttar Pradesh, he tried various states, but he was not given a chance,” Jakati said.
“But this is almost like ‘this is Goa, come, we welcome you’. What about our Goan players? We are also struggling, we are also training very hard, we also want to play for Goa. GCA President Suraj Lotlikar is not bothered about Goan players. We are calling players from outside to make a debut for the Goa cricket team,” he concluded.
(With IANS inputs)