Patil: 'It is sad that you end up losing friends as a selector'

Sandeep Patil, who was appointed the chairman of selectors following the sacking of Mohinder Amarnath in September 2012, said he ends his term as a happy man.

“We finish our term, very happy to finish on a positive and happy note."   -  R. V. Moorthy

The selection committee meeting to plan the long series lying ahead of India’s Test team was the last having chief selector Sandeep Patil, Saba Karim and Vikram Rathour. Naturally, the tone of the media interaction that followed was mixed, with Patil responding to queries about his tenure as well as the squad for the New Zealand series.

Patil, a swashbuckling batsman during his playing days, minced no word in spelling out the difficulties of being a selector.

“We finish our term, very happy to finish on a positive and happy note… I am very happy with the result we have achieved. The only sad thing is you lose friends when you become a selector, but that is part and parcel of the game,” Patil said. “I hope and I wish the BCCI and Indian team achieve greater heights and I also wish all the best to the next selection committee.”

Patil’s four-year term as chief selector saw India performing inconsistently. It also saw Sachin Tendulkar’s farewell and Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s retirement from Test cricket. Patil deflected a query about whether he actually had to tell Tendulkar to hang up the boots.

“We have taken some tough calls looking into the future of Indian cricket. It becomes difficult when you sit in the selection committee and when you discuss seniors and the form and fitness but we have taken some good decisions, tough decisions which have done well,” he said, “Today when we look at the Indian team, I feel really proud, of me and my colleagues, and the decisions we took.”

SHIRKE CLARIFIES AGE CAP FOR SELECTORS

The BCCI on Saturday put an age cap of 60 for aspiring selectors.

“The real reason is that people who are today over 60 or 65 have not really witnessed too much of the shorter format of the game. Let’s say someone who is 65 or 67 today, he will not have seen any T20 in his playing days and a very little amount of one-dayers. Going forward, with cricket having come to three formats, that is where that has come from,” explained BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke.

The BCCI secretary also added that the decision to invite applications stemmed from the need to have a pool to choose from rather than “we deciding amongst ourselves”.