Related Link : ICC Champions Trophy 2006
The pressure of having an Australian coach who wants every move of his enforced in the middle is finally telling on Rahul Dravid. Where has Dravid’s identity gone? One feels that he is being led by remote control with Greg Chappell being the non-playing Captain. India’s loss against the West Indies in the Champions Trophy is an example of how obvious this has become.
When has India ever had four medium pacers in the team with just the one spinner? To make matters worse Dravid, instead of realising his mistake, continued with his pace bowlers hoping that something would happen. India’s captain does not need to justify his mistakes at the stake of India losing. Instead of bringing on his other part time spinners Sewhag and Yuvraj, he continued to bowl R P Singh and Agarkar (who looked most innocuous) just to justify a foolish selection.
Greg Chappel is taking Indian cricket backwards and sadly Rahul Dravid is going down with him. It’s time Dravid realised that playing favourites of the Coach instead of going by instinct is only going to harm his Captaincy career. He is India’s best batsman and has to bat at no.3 for India to make use of his full potential. Instead, silly changes in the batting order with Pathan batting at no.3, just to keep him in the eleven, is inexplicable.
Pathan, Sewhag and Raina don’t deserve a place in the Indian team on present form. Why are we continuing to go with players that are out of form? If Sachin Tendulkar can perform without being 50 percent of his original genius, why can’t we go with players who are in form? Any one who is not playing to potential must be dropped. The ideal batting order for India is Dravid at no.3 and Yuvraj at no.4 with Tendulkar opening the innings. We have to give our best players enough time to get themselves in.
Sending Pathan at no.3 is suggesting that our best batsmen need to be shielded. Irfan Pathan bats for his State at no.7 in the Ranji Trophy. Why is he batting at no.3 for India? The Coach and Captain need to answer this question. Suggestions that we are experimenting is just not good enough. Simply because Australia rotates players around and we have an Australian coach does not mean we are as good as them. Australia has players that can replace each other at any time. India does not enjoy this luxury. While writing this piece India has just been humiliated by Australia and knocked out of the Champions Trophy. Instead of consolidating and reaching at least 280, the middle order collapsed. The Australians are far too professional to let go of an opportunity like this one. Sadly Rahul Dravid just does not seem to learn from earlier mistakes. Ramesh Powar was left out of the eleven again and four medium pacers were played. This resulted in Dravid having to bowl Mongia and Sewhag. Why has the Indian captain suddenly forgotten that India’s strength lies in its spinners?
The Indian team to tour South Africa has also been named. Kumble, Zaheer and Jaffer making a comeback into the side is a good sign. The selectors have shown that they are being positive and not writing off players because of their age. This will send encouraging signals to motivate cricketers to perform so that they can make a comeback into the national team.
Sourav Ganguly please note!!!