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Mumbai begin as firm favourites

Posted on Nov 23, 06:03PM | UNI

An all new Hyderabad team will take on the formidable Mumbai squad in a crucial Ranji Trophy Group 'A' match beginning at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here tomorrow.

Although belated, the HCA selectors have taken a huge gamble by effecting three major changes from the squad that managed a draw against Saurashtra in their previous outing, also at home.

If the host's, with a mere two points from three matches, nurture hopes of salvaging pride with the revamped team then it is quite possible that they would go all out for a win considering that with relatively inexperienced blood they have nothing to lose and everything to gain from the encounter.

Skipper D B Ravi Teja, seasoned campaigner T Arjun Yadav and world record holding wicket-keeper Ibrahim Khaleel may not have imagined even in their wildest of dreams that they would be out of contention. Effectively the team would be without the services of five of its leading players, including V V S Laxman and Pragyan Ojha.

More than naming opener P Akshath Reddy as the captain and southpaw B Sandeep as his deputy, the selectors have done well by giving weightage to merit and contemporary form, particularly in the context of giving the colts their due. Apparently, this augurs well as a sound future investment.