Middle-order batsman Ambati Rayudu has decided to retire from all forms of cricket and former India opener Gautam Gambhir has blasted the MSK Prasad-led senior selection panel, saying the five selectors combined would not have made the runs Rayudu has scored in his career.
Rayudu announced his retirement from all forms of the game but did not specify his reasons in his email to the Board of Control for Cricket in India. He had been ignored for the ongoing ICC World Cup.
The 33-year-old was in the official standby list for the big event in the UK but was ignored despite injury forcing all-rounder Vijay Shankar’s ouster.
Opener Mayank Agrawal was brought in on the team management’s insistence and it is learnt that Rayudu was left quite disappointed.
According to a PTI report appearing in The Quint, Gambhir, who played 58 Tests and 147 ODIs, minced no words in criticising the selectors for their part in Rayudu’s decision.
He termed Rayudu’s decision to retire as a sad moment for Indian cricket.
Rayudu played 55 ODIs for India, scoring 1694 runs at an average of 47.05. Declared the preferred No.4 batsman by captain Virat Kohli not many months ago, Rayudu was ignored as Vijay Shankar got the nod in India’s final squad for the big event.
Rayudu reacted on his omission with a sarcastic tweet that he would watch the World Cup wearing 3D glasses, in an obvious reference to chief selector Prasad’s defence of Vijay Shankar’s selection. Prasad had said that the Tamil Nadu player brings three dimensions to the table – as a middle order batsman who could bowl at medium pace and is also a handy fielder – and that was the reason he got the nod ahead of Rayudu.