Mumbai: A number of players, now touring Australia, are likely to be axed when the national cricket selectors meet here on February 29 to choose the team for the Asia Cup cricket tournament, that will also feature Pakistan Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
The meeting of the selection committee, to be chaired by Krishnamachari Srikkanth, comes after another crushing defeat for India in the tri-series match against Australia in Sydney in which players like Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja stood out as failures.
Jadeja, who was bought by skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's Chennai Super Kings for a whopping USD 2 million, failed again by making only 8 runs to give team a total of 101 runs in seven matches of the tri-series for an average of 16.83.
He has been touted as an all-rounder but has taken only two wickets for an average of 142.
The limitation of Raina, who has an excellent record at home, was exposed again in Sunday's match when he scored just 8 runs to give him an aggregate of 142 runs in seven matches for an average of 20.28.
His excellent fielding may not be enough for him to retain his place.
A key question before the selectors would concern Sachin Tendulkar - whether he would make himself available for selection and whether he will be picked after a poor run in ODIs in Australia.
Virender Sehwag's bad form is another issue to be addressed by the selectors. It would not come as a surprise if he is ignored.
Asia Cup may give the selectors an opportunity to try out the likes of Manoj Tiwary, who is part of the ODI team in Australia, but has not been given an opportunity.
Opener Ajinkya Rahane, Rajasthan's Robin Bist, who emerged as the highest run-scorer in Ranji trophy this season, are some of the players who can get a chance.
Stumper batsman Dinesh Karthik, who hit three centuries this season so far, is also an option for the selectors as he can be used as an opener as well.
The selection committee meeting to pick the team was advanced by a day to February 29 from March 1.
India are to clash with Sri Lanka in their opening match of the tournament on March 13.