Nehra - the forgotten man
Both were out roughly at the same time and for roughly the same reasons - fitness / attitude / form etc. While Zaheer slogged it out in domestic cricket, got fit, went to England, got fitter and returned to the team with impressive performances, Nehra went on record (about an year back) to ask for "senior players" to be taken back into the team once back from injuries, without having to prove themselves all over again.
Basically the guy wanted to waltz into the team coz he has bowled well for India in the past ... and yes, he has done that. So has Zaheer. And so has Ganguly played well for India in the past. These guys, on the other hand, choose to work on their shortcomings.
Ganguly hasn't really tightened up his technique or waved some magic wand ... he has just brought his concentration and focus back to his cricket. This was good enough for him to come up with good performances in SA ... and hopefully as the opener for the WI series and the world cup, he will do better still. Zaheer cut his butt size to about half of what it was when he was kicked out ... and the results r showing. A sharp 145 kmph bowler when he came into the team, he was trundling in at 120 - 125 when he went out. In SA, he was bowling regularly around 136.
Nehra is not in the list of 30 ... but really, the 30 is only important till the world cup and that is almost here. The question in the article about this being the end of the road for him was really stupid ... around April, the world cup would be over, and this list of 30 would be in the dustbin. Then it would be a free for all, in terms of the best players competing for slots. Since the new chairman of selectors, Dilip Vengsarkar, doesn't seem to be the kind of guy who gets impressed with what one did in 2003, I guess Nehra better start delivering on the field. Thankfully he has not given more statements about his views on "established and senior cricketers".
Interesting times ahead, I think! What with SRT as vice captain and Gangs looking as first choice for opener (Chuckster's view - he should never have left the opening slot in the first place). But those r topics for different posts.