Hyderabad have axed four senior players, while their head coach and batting coach have resigned in the aftermath of a humiliating defeat against Rajasthan in their opening Ranji Trophy game in Jaipur, where they were bowled out for 21 - the lowest score in the tournament's history. Batsmen Arjun Yadav, Anirudh Singh, Anoop Pai and allrounder MP Arjun have been left out of the team that will play Jharkhand on November 10. Head coach Venkatapathy Raju, a former Indian left-arm spinner, and batting coach Vivek Jaisimha handed in their resignations, before an emergency meeting of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) on Sunday.
Hyderabad lost their opening game of the tournament by an innings and 256 runs, with debutant medium-pacer Deepak Chahar grabbing 8 for 10 in the first innings and following it up with a four-for in the second, in which Hyderabad were bowled out for 126. The four senior players have been replaced by Under-22 cricketers Parth Jhala, B Sandeep, GH Vihari and Baseer. MV Sridhar, former Ranji captain and member of the HCA's Cricket Development Committee, will take Raju's place as coach for the team's next three games.
"These are few things which occur on rare occasions. It has been disappointing. I don't have the answers how any team could get out for 21," Arshad Ayub, former India offspinner and president of the HCA, told Deccan Chronicle. "The coaches have filed their reports. They have basically said the senior players have not taken up the responsibility, particularly since these players have been playing for quite some time. They feel there should be a change."
Among the people who resigned was also the Hyderabad Under-19 coach and former offspinner Kanwaljit Singh, following his team's run of four successive defeats. He has been replaced by Vijay Mohanraj, a former coach and batsman. "They have resigned on moral grounds. We have accepted the resignations," Ayub said.
When asked if there were plans to employ a coach from outside Hyderabad, Ayub said: "At this point and at short notice, we couldn't have got coaches from anywhere. If a coach came from outside, he would not have time to know the players. It was because of the time constraint we requested Sridhar, who has a great experience in Ranji Trophy cricket, to take over for the season."