Offspinner speaks out February 19, 2007

Powar 'not surprised' at World Cup exclusion

Ramesh Powar: one of the fringe players to miss out on India's World Cup squad © Getty Images

Ramesh Powar, the Indian offspinner, has said he did not expect to be picked for World Cup after not getting enough opportunities to prove himself in the lead-up matches. Yet he admitted that he rued missing the chance to show his allround ability.

Powar, who narrowly missed the flight to the Caribbean, said he was aware that getting into the team as a third spinner was always going to be difficult. "I was not surprised when my name was not included for the series against Sri Lanka because, first of all it came as a surprise to me when I was selected for the series against West Indies," he said. "As Anil Kumble was not there in the squad, I was provided a chance in the series against West Indies.

"After being among the wickets in the two matches at Cuttack and Chennai, against the West Indies, there was an outside chance of me being selected for the Sri Lankan series. But I was quite sure that I would not be included in the World Cup squad after my name did not figure in the four-match series against Sri Lanka. Had I played that series, then there were chances of me playing in the World Cup."

Powar, 28, has managed to pick up 24 wickets in his 18 one-dayers but averages only 16.71 with the bat despite being a more than handy lower-order batsman at the domestic level. Powar, though, felt that there had not been enough chances for him to show his batting prowess.