Tamil Nadu rookie Abhinav Mukund has been picked in the Indian test squad to tour West Indies next month. In 1989, two other Tamil Nadu cricketers, Robin Singh and M. Venkatramana had their first overseas tours to the Carribean as had L. Sivaramakrishnan earlier that decade in 1982.
Abhinav’s selection is fully justified coming on the back of a spectacular domestic season where he scored over 1000runs, though it must be said that he failed in the most important knock out match for Tamil Nadu in the Ranji Trophy. Interestingly, Abhinav has not been picked in the XI for most part of CSK's campaign in the IPL this season, endorsing prtraveller's view that he should concentrate on the longer version of the game, for which his strong technique is more suited to.
With this leap into the next phase of his career, Abhinav has everything going for him to kick start his Test Career. He could open with his TN team mate M. Vijay with whom he has been partnering over the last couple of years at the top of the order. West Indies will have an inexperienced bowling attack led by Sammy and newcomer Bishoo.
If he can play his typical long innings that he has come to be known since his school days, Abhinav could stabilise his place in the Test team, especially with the increasing amount of cricket leading to more frequent injuries to the top Indian cricketers.
Surprisingly, Abhinav who has been known to have a cool head, got into controversy last season in the Deodhar Trophy match for South Zone when he seemingly refused to bat down the order .Going forward, into the next level, it would be important for him to maintain the sense of balance and not get into such controversies.
In mid 2007, prtraveller had suggested that Abhinav could be the most stable, solid opener for India after Sunil Gavaskar. And like Gavaskar in 1971, this tour of the West Indies could turn out to be the ideal launch pad for a long and successful test career for Abhinav