Wicket-keeper batsman Parthiv Patel will replace Wriddhiman Saha in the third Test against England. Saha picked up a side-strain during the second Test at Visakhapatnam and has been ruled out as a precautionary measure. This is a huge chance for Parthiv Patel to undo the grave injustice destiny did to him. He made a Test debut against England in 2002 and caught national attention as he was just 17 year old at the time and was baby-faced. At the time India were grappling with their choices for wicket-keepers and he seemed to be the safest bet. However, with the instant success of Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Patel lost the race without making any mistakes. He was never considered again despite making tons of runs in domestic circuit.
Patel deserves more than what he got especially when India are again struggling with their keeping. He should replace Saha permanently in the team. (Read more: Man of Honour: Ashwin fulfills his promise of having a cup of coffee with Indian soldiers)
Patel is a frontline batsman, Saha is a tailender
In the current Ranji Trophy season, Parthiv Patel has played only eight innings and has made 415 runs. He has scored 3 half-centuries and a century. He has effected 17 dismissals behind the wicket.
Saha has not been scoring at all. In the recent Test matches against England, Ashwin was promoted ahead of Saha and performed splendidly. In the second Test, Saha scored 3 and 2 runs in both the innings respectively. Even Mohammed Shami scored more than him. Saha has been reduced to a tailender whereas Patel is still a frontline batsman. (Read more: Who do you think is a better all-rounder Ben Stokes or R Ashwin?)
Parthiv Patel played 20 Test matches and his average is 29.69. He struck 4 fifties in his career. 3 of his fifties have come outside India.
Saha has also played 20 Test matches and averages 28.19. He also has 4 fifties , 2 coming against New Zealand in a home series recently.
But when Parthiv played most of his Test matches he was a teenager. He has matured as a batsman. Whereas Saha is a seasoned domestic player, but he is a failure in international cricket.
Saha’s atrocious keeping
Wriddhiman Saha is not really good behind the wickets. He recently dropped catches in the series against England. Patel is a much better wicket-keeper.
Despite making a debut in 2002, Parthiv Patel is still just 31 years old. Saha is older than Patel. He is 32.