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Teenage sensation Prithvi Shaw breaks into the Mumbai Ranji squad

Prithvi Shaw
Prithvi Shaw. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Defending champions Mumbai have included teenager Prithvi Shaw in their 15 man squad for the Ranji Trophy semifinal clash against Tamil Nadu starting from January 1 in Rajkot. Shaw will be replacing opener Kevin d’Almeida. Shaw was in headlines due to his exploits in recently concluded ACC Under – 19 Cup and the selectors have decided to reward him for his performances.

“All the selectors consulted with the coach and the captain and felt that we should reward Prithvi for his performances. Anyway, the final combination will be decided depending on the conditions in Rajkot,” Milind Rege, the chief selector, told The Hindu on Wednesday.

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Mumbai advanced to the semi-final by beating Hyderabad by 30 runs in the quarterfinal. Rege watched the proceedings in Raipur from the sidelines for the first three days. d’Almeida, who made a return to the Ranji Trophy after two years on the back of a triple century, could manage scores of only 9 and 1 in the top order and also showed some really poor fielding.

Shaw, who was a part of the India’s victorious Asia Cup Under-19 tournament, under the tutelage of coach Rahul Dravid, first grabbed the headlines after smashing a record breaking 546 runs knock batting for the Rizvi Springfield in an inter-school tournament.

He along with Sarfaraz Khan and Armaan Jaffer have helped Mumbai continue its tradition of batsmanship. While Sarfaraz has moved to Uttar Pradesh and lost his place midway through this year’s Ranji Trophy, Jaffer failed to translate his age-group heroics in first-class cricket, scoring 44 runs in six innings in this year’s Ranji Trophy and lost his place.

Shaw’s inclusion has been forced by a string of injuries to Mumbai batsmen this season. Akhil Herwadkar, the main opener, is yet to be match-fit after fracturing his ankle in the league stage. Shubham Ranjane, who impressed in the limited opportunities, too broke down during his match-saving effort against Bengal.

\Star batsmen Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma haven’t conveyed anything about their return to the field, according to Rege. Even in the bowling department, Mumbai will continue to miss pace spearhead Dhawal Kulkarni, who has missed a better part of the season due to a knee injury.

The squad:

Aditya Tare (C&WK), Praful Waghela, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Siddhesh Lad, Abhishek Nayar,, Shardul Thakur, Balwinder Singh Sandhu, Tushar Deshpande, Royston Dias, Sufiyan Shaikh (wk), Vijay Gohil, Akshay Girap, Eknath Kerkar, Prithvi Shaw.

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