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Selectors must take call on Viru, says Dravid

Former India captain Rahul Dravid has said that the national selectors must take a call on whether to continue with struggling Virender Sehwag as an opener in the Test series in South Africa later this year or give someone else a chance.

‘I think the selectors and management need to decide whether they are going to open with Viru (Virender) in South Africa,’ Dravid said.

‘I mean Viru playing well, Viru at his best, is a great asset to any side, but the reality is that he hasn't been performing particularly well, and he hasn't really done well on overseas trips over the last two or three years.

‘If they feel confident about opening with Sehwag in South Africa, then I think it makes sense to continue with Sehwag and give him the opportunity to get that confidence,’ he added.

Even though India registered commanding victories in the first two Tests against Australia in Chennai and Hyderabad, the opening partnership between Sehwag and Murali Vijay could produce only 11, 16 and 17 runs. While Vijay scored a fine 167 in Hyderabad, Sehwag has totalled only 27 in his three innings.

The selectors will be picking the Indian squad for the last two Tests against Australia on Thursday.

After the two remaining Tests against Australia, India have no more five-day games scheduled before their trip to South Africa at the end of the year and Dravid felt that a young opener should be tested in home conditions first before throwing him in front of the new ball in foreign conditions.

‘I think it makes sense to try out another youngster, or try out another opener, and give him the opportunity to play at least a couple of Test matches in more familiar conditions, before going to South Africa.

‘I think it will be unfair on any young opener to be asked to go to South Africa straightaway, and play against the likes of Steyn, Philander and Morkel,’ Dravid said.
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