India opener Shubman Gill. (Photo/ Shubman Gill twitter)
India opener Shubman Gill. (Photo/ Shubman Gill twitter)

Saba Karim's comments on Gill unfortunate, BCCI chief Ganguly very strict on fitness protocols: Official

By Baidurjo Bhose | Updated: Jul 04, 2021 18:22 IST

New Delhi [India], July 4 (ANI): Former national selector Saba Karim's comments on India opener Shubman Gill's shin injury hasn't gone down well with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Gill injured his shin and has been ruled out for eight weeks. The batsman is unlikely to be a part of the first half of the five-Test series against England.
During a session on the podcast 'Khelneeti', Karim said he was surprised that Gill's injury escaped the eyes of the medical team and even said questions would be raised on how the opener passed the fitness test with the injury. And a senior BCCI official has said that such a comment is unfortunate and should have been avoided since president Sourav Ganguly is very clear that every protocol is followed and fitness assessment of contracted cricketers is done without fail.
"In making such a statement, he has questioned the leadership of Ganguly who is very particular about the rules being followed where fitness of players and selection of players is concerned. It is a serious allegation to make because in doing so he is trying to cast aspersions on the integrity of Shubman and the leadership of Ganguly. I personally think this is a cry for attention from Karim because he was himself a part of the Indian cricket set-up till very recently and he obviously knows that there is a proper process in place wherein a player goes through a fitness test and there is no way in today's day and age that a player can hide his injury. It may have happened when he was a player or a selector, I don't know, but his statement is very unfortunate.
"Shubman wasn't carrying any injury and this has happened on the tour. The kid has a high level of integrity and it is unfortunate that a former player who has played a Test match and someone who has been a GM in the BCCI can make such an outlandish statement," the official said.
Gill did not have a great outing in the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand as he recorded scores of just 28 and 8. He got off to a good start in the first innings but failed to convert it into a big score and disappointed in the second innings. New Zealand won the match by eight wickets to take the Test mace home.
After the stunning debut in the Australia series, Gill has faced a lean patch with the bat and the big scores eluded him even in the four-match Test series against England earlier this year. The injury to Gill means that either Mayank Agarwal or KL Rahul will get a chance to partner Rohit Sharma in the opening game of the series.
After the WTC final, the Indian team got a 20-day break and the side will regroup in Durham around July 14. The Indian team is also set to play a warm-up game before the series starts. India and England are slated to lock horns in five Tests, beginning August 4. (ANI)