Northampton: Test specialist Rahul Dravid`s surprise recall to India`s One-day squad after a gap of almost two years, can be seen as an admission by the national selectors that the Indian team is in the midst of a crisis, the experts feel.
Dravid, who has not been a part of India`s One-day set up for the last two years during which the national team featured in 57 ODIs, including the triumphant run of the 2011 World Cup, has made it only on the basis of his three centuries in last five Tests.
Although his inclusion, on the face of it, is a direct replacement for injured Yuvraj Singh, the former`s strike rate of 71.19 as compared to the latter`s 87.60 bears little comparison.
However, the fact that pitches in England are not the featherbeds tracks of the sub-continent and the present English attack is not made up of up-and-down medium-pacers, Dravid`s inclusion makes complete sense.
But this move would also put additional pressure on the selectors to retain him in the ODI squad during the West Indies and England series at home later this year.
The odds of Dravid`s inclusion in the One-day squad must have been 1000-1 when the selectors sat down to pick up the team earlier on Saturday.
But the feedback from England and the way India-England Test series has turned out so far, where almost every Indian batsman apart from Dravid failed to make an impression, must have convinced the selectors to opt for the veteran batsman for the ODI series, starting next month.
On this disastrous trip to England, which is still barely just three weeks old, inclusion of Dravid might be considered a backward step as the selectors have presented the England team with the evidence that their opponents are currently doddering wrecks and are not backing themselves to do any good in the coming weeks.
Picking up a young batsman instead of Dravid might have presented India with a rare cricketing talent, who would have seized the opportunity with both hands and become the future of Indian cricket, just as Sourav Ganguly and Dravid himself emerged during England tour of 1996.
It would be an irony, sweet though, if Dravid managed to succeed in One-dayers against England, for he had a moderate record here in 2007, scoring 223 runs with two half-centuries at an average of 37.17, while captaining the side.