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CAB grants NOC to Saha, 'will hold no grudge,' says keeper

July 02, 2022 19:39 IST

Wriddhiman Saha

IMAGE: Wicket-keeper-batter Wriddhiman Saha. Photograph: BCCI

Veteran India discard Wriddhiman Saha on Saturday was granted the NOC (No Objection Certificate) by Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB), bringing down curtains to his 15-year association under acrimonious circumstances.

A veteran of 40 Tests, Saha who will turn 38 in October, was categorically told by Indian team management earlier this year, that they don't want an aged second wicketkeeper in the set-up.

Since then, Saha has been critical of BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and also at the beginning, didn't have charitable things to say about head coach Dravid either.

"Mr Wriddhiman Saha came to CAB and in an application to President Avishek Dalmiya sought the NOC from the association," the CAB stated.

 

"CAB gave concurrence to the request of Mr Saha and provided the NOC to him for playing for another state. CAB also wished him the very best for his future endeavours," it added.

Saha took a decision to leave Bengal after CAB joint secretary Debabrata 'Debu' Das alleged that the veteran keeper makes excuses to skip domestic matches for the state.

An irate Saha wanted an unconditional apology from Das, which he didn't get and when the official was sent as Indian team's administrative manager to England, it broke the proverbial camel's back.

Talking to reporters after getting the NOC, Saha said he was requested again to reconsider his decision.

"I was asked earlier. Requests have been made again and again today. But my decision has already been made. So today I took NOC," he said.

He further said he would never keep any grudge against Bengal and would be ready to serve again if needed in future.

"I never had any ego issues with Bengal cricket establishment. May be, there was a disagreement with someone (joint secretary Debu), that's why I had to make this decision."

"I extend all my good wishes for Bengal. If I needed in the future, and if the situation is conducive then, I'm there for help," Saha further added before leaving the Eden Gardens premises.

Saha was last in discussion for a player-cum-mentor role with Tripura but a top official claimed that he demanded an "exorbitant fee" for the contract.

"There has been no development so far after he asked for an exorbitant fee apart from the regular match fees (Rs 2.4 lakh per match)," the official said.

"Tripura is currently mired in problems between two faction groups and there is an ongoing case in the High Court against the current establishment. Elections are due in September," the official added.

Asked where was he heading to in the next season, Saha said: "Talks are on with many states. But, it's still not decided, will let you know when it's 100 per cent confirmed."

But the veteran keeper's claims that Ganguly had assured him of being retained in the Indian team till he remained president, had raised eyebrows and Saha on his part could never produce conclusive evidence that was the former India captain's verbatim statement during an interaction with him.

"After scoring 61 against New Zealand at Kanpur, Dadi (Sourav Ganguly) congratulated me over WhatsApp and mentioned, 'As long as I'm here (heading the BCCI), you would be in the team".

"Such a message from the BCCI president really boosted my confidence. What I am struggling to understand is how things have changed so fast,” the wicketkeeper-batsman had alleged in his outburst post getting the boot from national team."

Having made his debut against Hyderabad in 2007, the Siliguri-born Saha has featured in 122 first-class and 102 List A games. He also has played 40 Tests and 9 ODIs for India.

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