Calcutta: With the first Test selection of the year just days away, Krishnamachari Srikkanth and his colleagues appear divided on veteran Vangipurappu Venkata Sai Laxman.
According to The Telegraph's sources, two of the five selectors want to "groom" a middle-order batsman in the upcoming two-match series against New Zealand, while two aren't really sure of the way forward. The thoughts of one couldn't be ascertained.
The sources' reading is that coach Duncan Fletcher isn't averse to the idea of picking a youngster instead of a 37-year-old who averaged under-20 in the last Test series, in Australia.
Laxman didn't do well in England either, but averaged 99.33 in the last engagement at home, versus the West Indies. He's three months shy of completing 16 years as an India cricketer.
Fletcher, it seems, holds the view that New Zealand won't be the strongest opponents and that one can't groom in the next series, against England. At the same time, he's believed to have conveyed that if Laxman is retained, then he should be there versus England as well.
Eventually, captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni's opinion may matter the most.
Laxman, for his part, has given no indication that he intends to go the Rahul Dravid way. He's been training hard, even going to the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore.
Srikkanth and the rest (Mohinder Amarnath, Narendra Hirwani, Surendra Bhave and Raja Venkat) will select the 14-member squad on Friday. The series begins in Hyderabad on August 23, with Bangalore hosting the final Test, from August 31.
If Laxman is dropped, then both Manoj Tiwary and Ajinkya Rahane could feature in the 14. If he isn't, then it may be one of them.
Tiwary has made the most of the belated opportunities which have come his way in Sri Lanka and is the direct beneficiary of Rohit Sharma's poor form. The latter isn't being thought of by the selectors.
Thus far, Tiwary has only been considered for ODIs and T20 Internationals.
Somebody who can't be written off, despite being found wanting at the highest level, is Suresh Raina. After all, he has influential backers.
Raina scripted a hundred on his Test debut two years ago, in Sri Lanka, but has faltered in challenging conditions.
India A captain Cheteshwar Pujara, meanwhile, is the front runner for the slot which has opened up after Dravid's retirement five months ago.
Among specialist batsmen, the certainties are: Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli. Pujara is almost there.
Where the bowling is concerned, the ones set to figure in the 11 are Zaheer Khan and Umesh Yadav; Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha.
Harbhajan Singh, whose last India appearance was a year ago, isn't in the frame at the moment. He's currently playing for Essex and took three wickets on Sunday.
If Harbhajan comes into the picture, then Rahul Sharma will miss out. Otherwise, the leggie is expected to be the reserve spinner.
Munaf Patel could be the back-up seamer. There are also whispers that Ashok Dinda is being thought of.
Footnote: Usually, a vice-captain isn't named for a home series, but if convention is broken, then the talk is that Sehwag will be Dhoni's deputy. Kohli is the No.2 in the shorter formats.