Former Indian cricketer Virender Sehwag has slammed Arjuna Ranatunga for his ‘B’ team remark. Ranatunga had stated that India sending a second-string team to Sri Lanka is an insult to the nation. While the Indian team is missing some of its regulars, who are in England for the five-match Test series against the ‘Three Lions’, they are not short on quality. The team includes several promising youngsters like Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Prithvi Shaw, Devdutt Padikkal, who have proven their potential in IPL. Also, the team has Shikhar Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, who bring tons of experience with them.
Sehwag said Ranatunga was a bit rude in calling the Indian squad a ‘B’ team, adding that every player in the current team is equally talented as the ones in England.
“Arjuna Ranatunga was a bit rude in saying that. He might have thought this is a ‘B’ team but the strength of Indian cricket is such that you can send any team and it won’t be a ‘B’ team. This is perhaps the benefit of the IPL, we have so much talent that we can’t accumulate in a single team. This team is equally talented,” said Sehwag in a chat with Cricbuzz.
The destructive opener further opined had India not gone to Sri Lanka, SLC would have lost a lot of funds and sponsorships. The ‘Nawab of Najafgarh’ said the current team in Sri Lanka can even defeat the Indian team in England.
“What he’s calling a ‘B’ team – which we don’t accept – if they play against the current players in England, they will defeat them in a few games too. I don’t think this is a ‘B’ team. The Sri Lankan board should instead thank the Indian board for even sending the team. They (BCCI) could have easily said, ‘We are unavailable, let’s have this tour sometime else”.
“They should be at least grateful for this team which will financially help the board and its players. If the Indian team had not gone there, they (SLC) would have lost the funds and sponsorships for all six games,” concluded Sehwag.