Bedi and Chauhan, members of the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA), had objected to Saini's selection in Delhi's Ranji Trophy team, terming him an "outsider" who belonged to Haryana. Am told black armbands are available in Bangalore too for INR 225 per roll!
Gambhir, who is now holidaying in Europe with his family, took to Twitter to remind Bedi and Chauhan as to how a section of DDCA officials were distributing pamphlets and were ready to wear black armbands on protest of Saini's inclusion. "Shami failed to clear the fitness test at NCA", the BCCI said in a press release. He finished last season as Delhi highest wicket-taker, helping the side reach the grand finale of the Ranji Trophy.
Saini has played 31 first-class matches so far and picked up 96 wickets, including five-wicket hauls twice.
This, according to the DDCA, had forced chief selector Chauhan to drop Pawan Suyal - ironically from Pauri in Uttarakhand - to accommodate the rookie from Haryana. I know what Gautam bhaiya had to go through to convince selectors that I was good enough to play for Delhi. Gambhir roasted the duo after Delhi pacer Navdeep Saini on Monday earned his maiden India call-up for the Afghanistan Test.
Captain was backed by seniors Sumit Narwal, Mithun Manhas and few others who helped Saini get into the team. "Gautam bhaiya told me 'Jaise tennis ball se dalta hai, waise hi dal". Gambhir after watching him bowl for 15 minutes had decided that Saini was a rare talent, who should be groomed properly.
Saini had earlier credited Gambhir for his Ranji call.
"I remember every tiny little thing".
Nearly immediately, the DDCA's Sports Working Committee issued a statement of disapproval which read: "A player who does not belong to Delhi, does not even play league cricket from any club of DDCA, has been included in the first XI against Vidarbha", the statement said, while stressing that the selection committee, headed by Chauhan, was "unduly pressurised by some external forces". He saw it in me before I realised myself. I did what he told me and today I am here because of him. "Today when I look back about those days, I smile", Saini said about the role of other individuals in his career.