Mumbai: Legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar’s son Arjun Tendulkar has been picked in the India Under-19 side which will be touring Sri Lanka in July. The team will be playing two four-day matches and five one-day matches in the island nation which is slated to be held from 11th July to 11th August 2018 .
The 18-year-old failed to find a place in the ODI team, but is expected to play a vital role in the four day game.
The team selection was done by Aashish Kapoor, Gyanendra Pandey and Rakesh Parikh who are India’s selectors at the U-19 level.
India will travel to Sri Lanka next month for the series. The four-day squad will be led by Delhi wicketkeeper-batsman Anuj Rawat, The one-day squad will be led by Aryan Juyal, who had made his List A debut for Uttar Pradesh in Vijay Hazare Trophy.
"There is a clear direction from BCCI and coach Rahul Dravid that those who will surpass 19 by this year should not be selected even if they have performed. Let them play Ranji Trophy according to Rahul. So a lot of boys ahead of Arjun are disqualified," a senior BCCI official told PTI today.
However, Harsh Tyagi (49 wickets), a left-arm spinner from Delhi is in both the squads. When a source close to the selection committee was asked how Arjun despite being 43rd in the wicket takers list made the cut, he explained: "If you look at the List, Arjun is the only genuine quick bowler who has more than 15 wickets. Most of the bowlers above him are spinners with only Ajay Dev Goud (33 wickets) being a genuine all-rounder. He is a slow medium bowler while Arjun is quick bowler." Also in a zonal U-19 match between West and South Zone at Una, Tendulkar junior got 4 for 37 including three wickets in one spell. "A lot of people don't know U-19 zonals are happening at Una and Arjun has done well there."
Arjun has trained under former India fast bowler Subroto Banerjee, a close friend of Tendulkar. He has also bowled at the India nets earlier and was in fast bowlers' camp at Dharamsala organised by the BCCI.
Asked if the youngster will be under pressure, the senior official said: "He is eyeing to become a professional cricketer. He is another member of this Indian squad and he will have to perform. The selectors have given him a chance looking at his potential."
Meanwhile, Aryan Juyal, who was the second wicketkeeper in the victorious World Cup squad, has been included despite the rule that no player who has played one U-19 WC would be in the squad. "Juyal is very young and has not graduated to first class level. So it's better he gets some match practice," the source said. WV Raman has been given an extension and will be the coach of this team as Dravid will be with the A squad in England....