Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Viru’s ouster a mistake

Former Australian captain Ian Chappell feels India have committed a big "mistake" by not including Virender Sehwag in the list of probables for their tour Down Under as the World Champion side still fears the swashbuckling opener. "India have made their first big mistake and the team hasn’t even been selected, let alone set foot on Australian soil. Now was not the right time to give up on Virender Sehwag," Chappell said.

The-29-year-old Sehwag failed to make the list of the 24 probables, which will be pruned to 16 on Wednesday. Chappell said Sehwag’s stupendous show in the last tour in 2003-04 still haunted the Australians and his presence would have given India a psychological edge.

Sehwag more often than not got the start for India and help India dictate terms throughout the tour. "Forget about whose nose might have been put out of joint, the Australians still fear Sehwag from the last tour. "It’s rare that you have a chance to put one over on the Baggy Green caps, so when the opportunity arises, you grab it with both hands," he was quoted as saying in the Herald Sun on Monday.Chappell said Sehwag should have been chosen for his ability to score at a brisk pace.

"He can not only score a Test hundred, he can also do it in a hurry and against new ball bowlers. The batsmen’s role is to score quickly in order to give the bowlers as long as possible to take the required 20 wickets to win a Test. "Sehwag’s batting leaves you with more time than a flight that arrives early," he said.

Chappell said with Sehwag, India had a chance to tame Aussie pace spearhead Brett Lee. "If for no other reason, India should have played Sehwag against Australia just to see if he could rattle Brett Lee and force him to forget the McGrath impersonations," Chappell said.