The chairman of the junior selection committee S. Sharath, was given a promotion on Saturday after being announced as one of the five national selectors. During his tenure, India won the 2022 U-19 World Cup and the U-19 Asia Cup.
Commenting on the tasks ahead in a year with the 50-over World Cup and a potential ICC World Test Championship final, Sharath said that while there is a roadmap envisioned, the new committee is yet to sit down and meet and will take it step-by-step.
Though he has played more than 100 First Class games with close to 9000 runs, he is also the only one with no international cap among the five selectors. What he lacks in international experience, Sharath makes up for with an understanding of the domestic ecosystem built over the last decade.
“As a match referee, we have a column for the TRDO where we give inputs on the players we come across, and I have done 49 First-Class matches as a referee. I am thankful the board has recognised the value I can bring to the table. It is a continuation of what I have been doing over the last few years from referee to junior committee to the senior level,” Sharath added.
“I have a good relationship with VVS Laxman (NCA director), and we have worked well over the past year. We have an immense talent pool in the country. Even from the last batch of under-19, we have quite a few players doing well in Ranji Trophy. So our job is just to harness it,” he added.
Addressing the issue of not being an international, Sharath explained, “as a selector, the main role is to communicate clearly with the players. More importantly, we should leave our history as a player behind. Our job is to observe, encourage and guide players where needed to help them improve as cricketers.”
“I am very thankful to the BCCI and TNCA for giving me this opportunity. It was an emotional moment for my mother as well to see me named as a selector after I missed out on playing for the country,” said Sharath as he signed off.