Delhi U-16 field 22 players in four matches, but it’s nothing new

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Problem of plenty or forced to use plenty? A question on most lips as 2012 runners-up Delhi U-16 crashed out of the ongoing Vijay Merchant Trophy. The selection panel shuffled players like a deck of cards and fielded as many as 22 players for the four matches they played in the North Zone group stages.

Delhi kicked-off their 2013 campaign against Punjab in New Delhi. Their performance in the opening fixture set the tone for the tournament as the only way forward for this unit was the way down. They conceded a first innings lead in the first game, went on draw the second, conceded lead in the third again, and went on to make some additions to the points tally in their last fixture against Jammu & Kashmir.

In their four outings in the middle, Delhi could only manage six points and occupy the second last spot in the North Zone standings. Apart from the quantity, the quality of players has also come under scrutiny. The poor performances were led by skipper Karan Bidhuri, who managed only 15 runs in 4 innings. Following his poor show in the first three matches, he was dropped for the final match against J&K. Delhi’s best bet was Jatin Shokeen, who scored 192 runs, including two gritty half-centuries.

The news of regular shuffling of players and substandard performances reached the DDCA Vice President Chetan Chauhan, who confirmed complaints about rotation of players and selection of players not up to the mark.

“Some players who were not performing well were selected, there were frequent changes in the side are the kind of complaints we have received.

Though they are not official or written complaints, but it has come to my knowledge,” said Chauhan.

Chauhan was quick to switch to defense mode, and pointed the inexperience of this team a reason for the poor show.

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