Updated: December 17, 2020, 7:34:25 am
23 years after his last official association with the game, former Indian pacer Salil Ankola was named chair of the Senior Selection Committee by the Mumbai Cricket Association. Former left-wing weirdo Sanjay Patil, Ravindra Thaker, Zulfiqar Parkar and Ravi Kulkarni will be the other selectors.
Ankola had applied for the role of coach in Mumbai alongside the selection position, and the Cricket Improvement Committee (CIC), chaired by Lalchand Rajput, believed that he would be eligible for the role of selector for the time being. Ankola played a Test and 20 ODIs in the 1990s before moving to a career in television and film.
“I gave them (MCA) options. I wanted to be a trainer or a selector. I just wanted to get involved. I just wanted to be part of the game and help the guys. I had made enough money, now it’s about satisfying my soul. I’ve seen our team not doing well over the past few years and the least I can do is try to bring Mumbai back to its former glory, ”Ankola told The Indian Express.
The first big task for Ankola and Co. will be to select the team for the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament, which must be reported to its bio-safe hub by January 2nd. The BCCI will have six such hubs with the 38 member teams divided into groups.
Ankola said he had long thought of returning to cricket. “I was an actor by default and a cricketer by heart. Cricket has always been my first love. I’ve always dreamed of playing for India. Cricket comes to me, of course. Over the past few years I’ve been telling my wife that I want to get back to cricket. Last year we decided we were going back into the game. I’ve talked to my close friends and they also said I should come back, ”he adds.
The 52-year-old former pacer is aware that cricket has changed since he played, as have cricketers. He calls himself a “silent bystander” who has closely followed cricket.
He explains, “When we played we were a different race, it was a different generation. Time has changed, you have to adapt to the changes in life. Cricket has changed too. It will be a challenge for us to bring Mumbai back to its former glory. “
The last time Ankola was seen on a cricket field was in 1997. “My life has been full of challenges. It is nothing new to me. We’re going through a phase in which we have to build a team for Mumbai. What better time to come back? If sailing is going smoothly, then sailing doesn’t make any sense. “
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