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Overseas defeats in SA, Eng Prasad’s biggest regrets



New Delhi, Dec 5: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly announced after the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Mumbai on Sunday that the tenure of the national selectors — led by M.S.K. Prasad — is over and a fresh selection panel will be picked for the future. And Prasad has said that not winning the Test series in South Africa and England are his biggest regrets as chairman of the committee.

"I think our No.1 ranking in Test cricket for 3 years has given me the biggest satisfaction. We won the ODI series in New Zealand, South Africa, and Australia. The Test series win in Australia was definitely a sweet one," MSK Prasad told indiatoday.in.

"My biggest regret would be overseas defeats. I would have loved to see the reverse of what exactly happened in South Africa and England. We had everything in our team. Our team deserved to win the way they fought. But for those crucial moments in Edgbaston and Southampton and also Cape Town, the results could have been the other way around."

Speaking after the AGM, Ganguly had said: "Tenures are finished. You cannot go beyond tenure. They have done a good job. We will fix a term for selectors and it is not right to appoint selectors every year."

While Prasad and Gagan Khoda had been appointed selectors in 2015, Jatin Paranjpe, Sarandeep Singh and Devang Gandhi were inducted into the panel in 2016.

One of the biggest issues the committee faced was finding a No.4 for India in the limited-overs format and that was one of the reasons behind India's exit in the semi-final stage of the 2019 World Cup. But Prasad said that he never felt any pressure.

"I have never felt the pressure. You'll only feel restless and uncomfortable if there's no clarity of thought. We were very very clear especially while picking players," MSK Prasad said.

"You should believe in your plan and execute it to the best of your abilities. Then you don't have to worry about what's going on outside. In order to pick the right players, we watched a lot of domestic cricket all of us. We discuss a lot of cricket between us all 5 of us.

"It needed extensive travelling. We travelled about 220-240 days a year. We rounded off some of the players based on their consistency over the last 2 years. We groomed them through India 'A' process. We backed them. As and when there were requirements, we got the bench strength ready.

"Today we have 6 quality spinners apart from the main guys. We have got 4 fast bowlers apart from our 5 main bowlers. They are good enough to represent India at will.

"Criticism is part and parcel of this job, the pressure as well. This comes only because of the post we are holding. I am sure we did our best to handle that. We were, in fact, happy to handle it the way we did," he pointed.

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