Kolkata, October 27: Allrounder Shahbaz Ahmed and leg-spinner Prayash Ray Burman were the new faces in the 16-member squad announced by Bengal for their Ranji Trophy opener against Himachal Pradesh to be held in Amtar from November 1 to 4. Bengal take on Madhya Pradesh next at home from November 12.
After making the Ranji semis last season, Bengal made a disastrous start this time, failing to make the knockouts in the Vijay Hazare Trophy as skipper Manoj Tiwary and coach Sairaj Bahutule have been given a two-match ultimatum.
"We need results, everyone has to deliver. It won't happen like this till I'm around. We just can't let things pass," Cricket Association of Bengal president Sourav Ganguly had said at Eden Gardens earlier.
"Both Manoj and Sairaj will continue in their respective roles for the first two matches. Their performances will then be reviewed and a decision taken," he added. Ganguly had earlier slammed the inconsistent performance of Bengal. "If you consider the last two seasons, we won around 90 per cent of the matches and this season we fail to qualify! Why is there so much inconsistency?," a livid former India captain had said.
"Even a team like Delhi makes it to the final. We provide everything -- best coaching and practice facilities, so performance has to be the last word." Former India batsman Arun Lal, who has recently been appointed as the mentor after the team's poor performance in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, is likely to travel with the side. This will be Lal's first direct involvement with the game after having fully recovered from cancer. Lal had been the Bengal coach in the late 90s.
Manoj Tiwary (c), Sudip Chatterjee (vc), Ashok Dinda, Anustup Majumdar, Shreevats Goswami, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Abhishek Raman, Koushik Ghosh, B. Amit, Mukesh Kumar, Ishan Porel, Pradipta Pramanik, Prayash Ray Burman, Saurabh Kumar Singh, Shahbaz Ahmed, Aamir Gani.