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Rediff.com  » Sports » Dravid named captain for Sri Lanka, South Africa ODIs

Dravid named captain for Sri Lanka, South Africa ODIs

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Last updated on: October 13, 2005 21:06 IST

Rahul Dravid was named captain of the Indian cricket team for the one-day international home series against Sri Lanka and South Africa.

The stylish Karnataka batsman takes over from Sourav Ganguly, who is nursing an elbow injury.

Board of Control for Cricket in India secretary S K Nair, speaking after the selection committee meeting in Mohali on Thursday evening, said the selectors were unanimous in their decision to appoint the 32-year-old.

The seven-match one-day series against Sri Lanka begins from October 25, while the five-ODI series against South Africa is from November 16 to 28.

Dravid has led India in five Tests and 17 ODIs. Under him India won two Tests and lost as many, against Australia and Pakistan last year, while the fifth, against New Zealand, was drawn.

In the 17 ODIs that Dravid led the team, India tasted success seven times and lost nine, with one no-result.

With a question mark hanging over the fitness of Ganguly, the selectors predictably elevated Dravid to the captaincy barely a month-and a-half after he led the team for his first full series in Sri Lanka.

Nair said the decision to appoint Dravid had nothing to do with Ganguly's injury.

"It has nothing to do with Ganguly. He will be considered as a player depending on the fitness report, which will be submitted by the physio, John Gloster, on October 17," Nair said after the selection committee meeting, which lasted for about an hour.

Asked if the decision to appoint Dravid meant the selectors desired a change, Nair replied: "Obviously, when it is a different name, it means a change."

Dravid was handed the reins of the team for the tri-series in Sri Lanka in July but was removed to accomodate Ganguly for the tour of Zimbabwe.

But this time around the selectors have given him a longer tenure of two full one-day series so that he can prove his leadership qualities, a decision bound to fuel speculation on Ganguly's immediate future, particularly after his injury problems and stand-off with coach Greg Chappell.

Ganguly, whose public spat with Chappell made headlines recently, made the task easier for the selectors after he was ruled out of competitive cricket till October 18 because of an injury, diagnosed as "mild tennis elbow symptom".

The injury, which forced Ganguly to opt out of the Challenger Series, will be reassessed in Mumbai after the 10-day period, but even if the doctors clear him, the left-hander will have to prove his fitness in a domestic game before playing in an international match as per the BCCI's directive on "form and fitness".

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