New Zealand cricket news August 26, 2009

NZ selection commitee policy receives mixed reaction

The appointment of Daniel Vettori and Andy Moles on New Zealand's national selection panel has evoked mixed reactions in the cricket world. Justin Vaughan, New Zealand Cricket's CEO, described as "innovative" the move to include the pair in the panel - at present no other country has given voting rights to captain and coach - but some others were not so sure.

Dilip Vengsarkar, India's chairman of selectors between 2006 and 2008, felt the selection panel did not require any extra members. "I feel it is absolutely unnecessary," Vengsarkar said. "I feel the captain and coach should be consulted but that's about it. If you already have selectors, three, four, five or whatever number, then why have two more."

John Buchanan, the former Australian coach, backed the move, saying it would help "build the future of New Zealand cricket" by giving additional power to the coach. "It is definitely a good move," Buchanan said. "If you take the current case of New Zealand, the coach is involved not only in shaping the team for the current series in Sri Lanka, but he is also very much involved in trying to shape New Zealand cricket's future."

Trevor Bayliss, the Sri Lankan coach, believed that voting rights weren't essential as long as the opinions of the captain and coach were taken into account. "If you have got four or five different thoughts on how the game should be played, or on the balance of the team, then that gives more options," Bayliss said. "The best teams are ones who have more options.

"Even if the coach and the captain don't get a vote on the selection process, they get a fair hearing from the selectors in 99% of the cases," he said. "You don't want to have a case where the captain and coach are pulling in different directions. It is all about having a good discussion and reaching unified decisions.

"It is good to have different opinions in selection but once the decision is made then you (captain and coach) support it. So, whether you actually get either a vote or a good hearing, I don't see a big difference."

Bayliss didn't agree with the view that the relationship between the players and the captain would get damaged if the captain and coach take the decision to drop a member of the team. "Anyone who gets dropped is not going to like or agree with the decision. But if you are honest to the player and give him feedback on how he could make a comeback, he might respect you more."

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at Cricinfo