‘Jaiswal was brilliant but picking players ahead of Sarfaraz is injustice’ Ponting Slammed Indian Selectors

Team India kicked off the World Test Championship (WTC) 2023-25 cycle in remarkable fashion, securing a resounding victory over the West Indies in the opening Test at Windsor Park in Dominica. Led by the outstanding performances of Yashasvi Jaiswal and Ravichandran Ashwin, the Indian cricket team outclassed the hosts by an innings and 141 runs on the third day of the match.

Yashasvi Jaiswal, a rising star in Indian cricket, delivered a stellar performance in his Test debut. The 21-year-old left-handed batsman showcased his immense talent and caught the attention of former Australia captain Ricky Ponting, who praised Jaiswal’s batting exploits in the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL). Jaiswal’s remarkable knock of 171 runs in the first Test not only contributed significantly to India’s victory but also marked the third-highest score by an Indian player on debut in Test cricket. His outstanding performance earned him the well-deserved accolade of Player of the Match.

Ricky Ponting, known for his astute cricketing insights, lauded Jaiswal’s exceptional talent and expressed his admiration for the young Indian players. Ponting highlighted Jaiswal’s meteoric rise in the IPL, describing his transformation into a superstar virtually overnight. He expressed great anticipation for witnessing the young Indian talents playing Test cricket and drew parallels between Jaiswal and Ruturaj Gaikwad, hailing both as potential “very serious” all-format players in the near future. Ponting’s words further emphasized the immense depth of talent within Indian cricket.

“I mean Jaiswal’s IPL was something special. He almost just flicked a switch and turned into a superstar overnight. Everyone knew that he was a talented youngster, but what I saw in this year’s IPL, he’s got all sorts of talent,” Ponting said in ICC Review.

Ponting also praised India’s quality of domestic cricket. He said “There’s a lot of those young Indian guys that I can’t wait to see play Test cricket and yet you look at their domestic records as well and you can’t help but be impressed. I’m on record saying that I think Gaikwad’s the same (as Jaiswal). I think he could be a very serious Test match player or all-format player really in the next couple of years,”

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The omission of Sarfaraz Khan from the Test squad caused a stir among cricket enthusiasts and invited criticism directed at the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the selectors. Ponting himself expressed sympathy for Sarfaraz, questioning the selectors’ decision to overlook him despite the young batter’s impressive record in first-class cricket.

“The one I do feel a little bit sorry for is Sarfaraz Khan. The fact that he hasn’t got a look in a Test squad just yet considering he averages in the high 80s I think in first-class cricket, which is absolutely unheard of, but for some reason, they keep picking these other guys ahead of him,” the 48-year-old said.

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