Indian cricket administration September 19, 2006

Raju likely to join national selection panel

Cricinfo staff

Venkatapathy Raju is likely to don the selector's hat © Getty Images

Venkatapathy Raju, the former Indian left-arm spinner, is most likely to be South Zone's representative in the National Selection Committee as a replacement for VB Chandrasekhar. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) will announce the members of the new selection panel when it meets in Mumbai on September 27 and 28 for its Annual General Meeting.

Raju, a Hyderabad stalwart who retired from first-class cricket in 2004, has the strong backing of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) as its representative from the South Zone, based on the rotation policy followed by the zone's three major associations - the HCA, Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) and Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA). One candidate from each association is nominated for a two-year period. Brijesh Patel of the KSCA held the post before Chandrasekhar of Tamil Nadu. The other zones do not follow the same rotation system.

"He is our choice for the post and there is no doubt about that," Shivlal Yadav, the HCA secretary and former Indian offspinner, told The Times of India. Raju is also the chairman of the HCA's senior selection committee.

Of the five-man selection panel only two slots are vacant - from the south and west zones. The names of Dilip Vengsarkar, the former Indian captain, Dhiraj Parsana and Karsan Ghavri are doing the rounds for the West Zone slot.

Sanjay Jagdale (Central Zone), Ranjib Biswal (East Zone) and Bhupinder Singh Sr. (North Zone) are the other three members of the current selection panel but whose tenure continues. Once the two new members join the panel the senior-most among all five will take over as chairman of selectors.