It’s hard to imagine an Indian white-ball squad today without Suryakumar Yadav. In the last 14 to 15 months, he has been both India’s and the world’s finest T20I hitter. The second-most T20I hundreds for India, after Rohit Sharma, have already been scored by him. His strike rate of 180 combined with his T20I average of 46 is unmatched. Given that he accomplished all of that while mostly hitting No. 4, he is considered an all-time great in the format. However, T20I is the essential phrase here. SKY hasn’t been as intimidating in ODIs as he has been in T20Is. Additionally, Team India has deliberately avoided combining formats. As a consequence, Shreyas Iyer was chosen in place of Surya for the opening ODI against Sri Lanka on Tuesday.

Surya has only scored two fifty-plus scores in the 16 ODIs he has played, with an average of 32 and a strike rate barely over 100. In contrast, Shreyas Iyer led India in ODI scoring last year with the most memorable hits of any player in the format.

But former India selections chairman Krishnamachari Srikkanth disagreed with the Indian think tank. He chose to apologize to the right-hander on live television after learning that Suryakumar’s name was not included in India’s XI for the Guwahati series opener. The former India opener said he felt awful, not because he was involved in the decision to fire SKY.

FIRST ODI LIVE SCORE: INDIA VS. SRI LANKA

“Additionally, Surya, I’m sorry and I feel horrible for you. Why is Suryakumar Yadav absent from the team? Who are the impact players among the top five, you wonder? Who are the players capable of stealing the game from the opposition?” The cricketer who won the 1983 World Cup stated on Star Sports.

The absence of all-arounder Washington Sundar from India’s starting XI also startled Srikkanth. “I have no idea why Washington Sundar isn’t participating. I would have chosen two pacers, three spinners, and Hardik Pandya as a backup. We need to create more batting all-rounders since that is where India is lacking, which is why I keep repeating it “Added he.

Sanjay Manjrekar, a former cricketer for India who served on the same selection committee, was more upset by India leaving out Ishan Kishan than Surya’s omission. Ishan Kishan broke the world record for the fastest double century in ODI history during the final 50-over match that India played in December.

“I can appreciate their reasoning for skipping Surya since all of his outstanding performances have come in T20Is. Why not give Kishan the same run that Shubman Gill is receiving? He scored two hundred. The left and the right-hand combo will be brought by him. When India doesn’t choose Kuldeep Yadav, I am always unhappy. I’ll always have him in cricket when it’s 50 overs. You could see his influence during the Bangladesh Tests.”