Friday, June 24, 2016

The curious case of Anil Kumble !!!

It was a usual Thursday Evening in the office. A big event was on the Trot. The Clock was ticking to almost 05:00 PM as it was scheduled for an announcement of India Head Coach. The announcement delayed by more than an hour & 15 minutes. I was trying to make the bestest canva cards to flash the breaking.

Finally the melodrama of BCCI came to an end at 06:15 PM and the new boss of BCCI Mr. Anurag Thakur declared Anil Kumble as the coach of Team India for one Year ! The decision was welcomed by one and all with sheer joy across the cricketing fraternity. (On and Off the Field)

956 International wickets in his career, one of the best cricketer India has ever produced. The guy who batted and bowled with a broken jaw, owns a record of taking 10 wickets in his kitty in one inning after Jim Laker. Once his name was there in the ring. Probably it was hard for anybody to cross this challenge to be the favorite of Indian Trios (Sachin- Sourav-Laxman) who were bound to suggest some names to the BCCI.

As a coach his coaching credentials are very limited. He has mentored the two IPL Franchise RCB and Mumbai Indians but it is said that it takes a lot being the coach of team India. I am no body to raise a finger or pin point the selection but his sudden rise amidst those 57 applicants are bound to raise some eyebrows.

As an individual I admire him a lot, his determination, grit and prowess are worth an institution and lot to be admired but as BCCI had made this application public. The "Jumbo" probably fails the first criteria; he has never coached an international or first-class team, which was one of the criteria the BCCI had listed in its job description. Even in professional streams we come across such examples where criterias are just limited to the rule books. I have no dearth of doubt that he may prove an excellent coach and administrator. There’s no doubting his intentions and cricketing credentials, but it’s the manner in which he was selected that raises some questions.

This is a very serious question to the new Boss of BCCI. I am no body to raise a finger or pin point the selection but his sudden rise amidst those 57 applicants who had applied for the same posts are bound to raise some eyebrows. Even Sandip Patil didn't get any mention or invitation courtesy the final round of interviews.

In a routine work I was just going through some classy piece of ESPNCricinfo where I found an interesting bit According to a report published in Cricinfo, Kumble had not made that 21-man shortlist.

It was on the insistence of Tendulkar, Ganguly and Laxman that his name was added to the pot. If this is the transparency then pardon me BCCI should think to change their some of the policies on which they are working right now. As stated by BCCI President Anurag Thakur on a serious note for god sake make BCCI "more transparent". The news were also rife that even Ravi Shahstri had the backing of Virat Kohli, the captian who is going to lead team for miles. 

May be as he later stated that Rahul Dravid was the first choice and he refused to go with the post and work but it seems that Indis's Fab Five would rule Indian Cricket for some time. Kumble to coach senior team, Dravid to nurture future stars of team India and the trio of Sachin, Ganguly and Laxman in Advisory Committee we can probably hope for the best of team India as it was in 90s when they were the part of dressing room. As I think giving "JUMBO" this responsibility is on a trial and error process; If it goes with the plan they may carry forward unless would look for a change. 

Knowing the way the BCCI functions, it is unlikely these questions will ever be answered. More or less The Jumbo has 365 days to prove his credential as a coach and I hope that he would do so!  

India are set to play 17 Tests mostly on home soil. we may hope that the aggression of Virat and the coool, calm and composed nature of Kumble may bring some good results, and why not the greatest cricketer of our country deserves a chance...As an avid fan of cricket Good luck, Jumbo, and hope it all works out for the best!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

In quest of Team India Coach

I don't know why but whenever I try to pen down something digitally so often it is cricket. May be it has become my forte to write something on cricket but next time to be on some really serious issue......though searching a cricket coach through my words was a serious job.

The 'New Boss' of BCCI has invited an open application process for the Coach of Team India. Even the team is without a fix time coach since last one and half Year and has done well  in the recent past but the long quest for this post must come at a logical conclusion.

Rahul DravidFB Wall 

I was listening to Mr. Anurag Thakur after being chaired as the BCCI Boss. It  hardly reflected that team IND is looking for a foreign National Coach. I lend my voice and support to the "Marathon Man" of India Rahul Sharad Dravid for this post. May be you can take me a biased but he looks as a good option  though.

Few can rival his invaluable experience as a player, having scored over 24,000 runs and 48 centuries in his international kit. Dravid is a modern-day cricket legend and his understanding of the intricacies of the game, including the T20 format, will be of immense value to this young Indian team.

Besides, he has done the hard yard as coach, having mentored IPL teams Rajasthan Royals and Delhi Daredevils, apart from coaching junior Indian teams (Under-19 and India A). He understands the rigours of the job.

Rahul DravidFB Wall
A man known for his discipline, calm, composure, class, grit and dizzy will would be fit enough to fill in the Big Shoes of India Coach. It is just not about me who admires him as a human more than a cricketer but entire cricketing fraternity loves him specially the young guns; Mr. Dependable gets word of praise from the likes of young kid Sanju Samson, Rishabh Pant to Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane).

He is somebody who has always received heap of praise for everything what  he did on and off the field. Be it being the Classy World No-3 Batsman, when thrown grabbed the wicket keeping gloves and at any point of time ready to fit in any kind of situation and even off the field a "Super cool dad" who drops and picks his kids to and from school and goes to collect his LPG on his own... he has got the back of likes of Sunil Gavskar and Ricky Ponting who consider him as the "best guy" to be a lead in this role mentally and physically if he is ready to take this one.

Fit in the shoes of Coach :
To coach a National Team like India is one of the toughest  task. The road to excellence can be brutally lonely and monotonous for a player. We hardly come to know the dedication, devotion and discipline behind a successful cricketer. We just see their success and take it as a piece of cake. 

Just like same a coach who has accomplished success at the highest level can inspire players to realize the importance of routine training regimens, sacrifice and commitment needed to excel in international cricket. What separates the greats from others is work ethic and mental toughness. Dravid has it all in his kitty if BCCI is looking for an Indian Coach.

Being one of the finest batsmen of his time, he can provide the right ecosystem for the likes of Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma....some of the most promising batsmen in international cricket. Dravid can help convert their potential into consistent performance, more so in tough overseas conditions where glory can be elusive..

Rahul DravidFB Wall 
Be at  Best in Test :
Another skill for which Dravid hasn’t received enough credit is fielding in the slip cordon. He holds a world record of 210 catches, mostly in slips... where most players except Rahane have struggled. I was listening him on a TV channel uttering what  it  takes to be the best slip fielder. 

A special practice and sheer concentration makes you the best slip catcher in the world. In my opinion thi place in Test cricket plays a major role. This is one area where Dravid may have to work the hardest as it needs specialized training and understanding of the field position.

Being an avid fan of Cricket and Dravid i think that "The wall" hardly got for what he did for prolong 16 Years. An unsung HERO of cricket  could have deserved more ! It was march 09, 2012 when he hanged his boots and left the room and international cricket as he had walked in......swift and smooth and some tears in his eyes..... He could have been given a chance to a fitting farewell with even a Home Test as BCCI  did for the legend Sachin.

Rahul DravidFB Wall
A role model for Many : 
Dravid is a role model for hundreds of  thousands of youngsters in India and deserves a special  feel in millions of cricket loving fans across the globe but sometimes i  do feel sorry for the most  loved gentleman of cricket ......a great player, a great mentor, a great human being but ends up being on the losing side always !!! BCCI should at least give him one chance to don the role of "somebody" who had once made country proud by making it a World Number One and will again do so by nurturing the young kids.        

Can the Indian cricket board get a better endorsement for Rahul Dravid as coach? I don’t think the BCCI will find many better candidates than someone like him. He has given everything to cricket now cricket has a chance to pay him back....isn't it ?

Friday, January 15, 2016

Team India is an Enigma?

Team India is an enigma hard to understand, a 'food' hard to digest and a TEAM hard to buy time on watching? May be a little harsh but team BCCI sorry... India is loosing its shine from one to another overseas tours!

Dhoni, hard to understand or speculate leads a team which is an unsolved puzzle. As a captain MSD has lost his aggression (Internal), charm, Glitter, Shine, temper and probably the zeal to win the match. When the 'Captain' lacks the potential, temperament and grit the "ship is bound to sink".

His body language (even after retiring from fatigue test as he had termed it) even in ODIs look like just as a professional (who is just playing to get some crores to his kitty) not as a player who plays to win or to get result.

There is no dearth of doubt that as stat suggests he is one of the most successful captain IND has ever produced till date but for me he is just a gambler who gambles and sometimes get success.

Causes of Enigma:
Is it the same Rohit Sharma? An absolute time bomb in limited-overs cricket, but an equal disaster in Tests. Is it the same Ravichandran Ashwin, the ‘best’ spinner in the world? Or is he a square turner bully? Ravindra Jadeja is unplayable at home. Very playable and in fact  become the 'target' of rival batsmen away. Or is it the same Mahendra Singh Dhoni? Unbeatable for so long, quite beatable now?Cricket is not a gamble and you can't put money every time on a horse who is injured from one foot. You can only win games by a team effort and the right kind of attitude and spirit.

Team India probably has surpassed the transition phase of Sachin-Dravid-Laxman-Ganguly era and are winning at home on an altered pitch courtesy team director Ravi Shastri.

This is such a bizarre that you call a team (RSA) give them a pitch suited to your own potential and hashtag yourself as the 'HERO' of cricket and questions the hype about pitch! Just after a month the same team goes on a tour and find it hard to defend the total of 300+ in ODIs.You become flat on flat pitches of WACA & GAWA. The same bowler who became world number one in test cricket finds it tough to even throw a DOOSRA or TEESRA. It was 2nd ODI at Gawa and once again Australia paced their pursuit to perfection.

Excuse King DHONI :
I have never heard/seen the biggest excuser than Dhoni in cricketing fraternity! Accepting the defeat is a biggest victory, admit it of you have lost! Only accepting the defeat will strive you for victory. you will not be sacked from ur captaincy just for acceptance.

This 'back bench leader' is immensely talented in readymade excuse after every single defeat either at home or overseas. You may not agree with me but listen Dhoni after any defeat you would probably get this for sure.

"The breeze was not flowing in one way, it was circulating around. It made slightly difficult for Ishant: MS Dhoni" after loosing 2nd ODI in Australia while Ishant bowled well. sometimes back when South Africa defeated he uttered "we lost the match just because there was not so much due" As a captain you can't hide ur failure via excuse. On the contrary Australian bowlers tightened the grip in last 10 overs despite some good hittings from Rahane.

Poor Chap Dhoni :
When a reporter asks you the question of hanging ur boots..take it as an alarm. The OLD Dhoni is probably missing! OOOPS he has gone slimmer during breaks and turned his grey hair black through cosmetic ink, runs even more harder between the wickets but finds it difficult to hit those most non-technical Helicopter shots and make runs since the last T-20 World cup against Srilanka.

(1stODI :18 runs on 13 balls, 2nd ODI:11 runs on 10 balls no boundary against AUS) He probably is the not "the finisher" he was known for. Team India couldn't hit a boundary in last 19 balls. No body knows what would be the right time for Dhoni to hang his boot but he doesn't really look like the OLD Dhoni on the field. Every single defeat against his name is bringing the curtains down on his career as a player. Take my word the next T20 world cup may be his last stint as a player if wind doesn't go in his favour! 

'Sir Jadeja' a constant headache :  
Whether Jadeja plays well or not Dhoni gets an excuse to rate him as the biggest all rounder to be included in team. I hardly remeber a match victory through Jaddu's clinical performance. Axar is warming the bench who could be more worthy than him. 

Ashwin is again his best mate who stood for him in both good and bad times so he is always in the team if MSD is captain. Score of players are waiting on the bench for their turn.

The team India needs a change either in attitude or in the captain. Team India was an enigma even in 90s and is still an enigma in 2016. 

This is not the good beginning for team India in New Year.



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