Mumbai, Aug 6: It has been nearly two years since Rahul Dravid last played in a one-day game for India. The event was the Champions Trophy in South Africa and the opponents were the West Indies. But apparently, the BCCI doesn't consider his long hiatus from the form of the game, and consequent lack of ODI practice, as an issue.
When the Indian scene is overstocked with a new crop of budding one-day specialists, the board has decided to turn to the old guard for the upcoming ODI series against England, even naming Sachin Tendulkar in the squad for the limited-overs leg of the England tour.
Meanwhile, other experienced ODI campaigners in Yusuf Pathan, Yuraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh have been dispensed with while Rohit Sharma who's apparently earned his stripes from a prosperous tour of the Caribbean in June this year, has been reabsorbed into the fold.
As though these moves by the BCCI are not bizarre enough, Dravid has even found a place in the Twenty20 squad! If he indeed plays the one-off T20 match against England of the ongoing tour, the fixture could very well be his debut in the international version of the format.
Some may argue by saying, "why not?". After all, his average in the IPL is a shade under 30 at a healthy strike rate of 117. The Indian board is also going by the fact that he has the second highest aggregate in the current Test series. So he must be well-acclimatised to English conditions. Now, it's just a question of shifting gears...
Indian ODI squad: MS Dhoni (capt & wk), Sachin Tendulkar, Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Suresh Raina, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Parthiv Patel (wk), Amit Mishra, R Ashwin, Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma, Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel, Vinay Kumar