'Ganguly was considered a specialist batsman who could occasionally bowl', according to Pranab Roy © AFP
Pranab Roy, the deposed senior national selector, said Sourav Ganguly was included in the Indian team for the just-concluded Chennai Test not as an "allrounder", but as a specialist batsman.
"Ganguly has all through been a specialist batsman," he said. "When we discussed his name, we considered him as a specialist batsman, who can occasionally bowl."
When it was pointed out that Kiran More, the selection committee chairman, had announced to the media that Ganguly had been taken in the side as a batting allrounder, Roy said "I cannot comment on what More has said. I don't know what he has said and in what sense."
After being sacked as captain and kept out of the squad in the back-to-back one-day series against Sri Lanka and South Africa, Ganguly made it to the team in the rain-hit Chennai Test against Sri Lanka.
Roy, a member of the national selection panel from East Zone then, had been strongly arguing Ganguly's case at selection meetings during the period when Ganguly was out of the side. "We never considered him as an allrounder," he said, referring to the deliberations at the November 23 selection committee meeting where Ganguly was recalled to the side. However, Roy refused to give details, saying "It will be improper on my part to leak what happenned at the selection meeting".
Roy and two other selectors, Gopal Sharma and Yashpal Sharma, who had played a key role in ensuring Ganguly's return to the Indian team, were sacked the very day the new Sharad Pawar-led regime took over the reins of the BCCI.