Former India captain Sourav Ganguly spoke about India’s poor run in the Test series against England after losing 4-1 to them. He believes that the problem lies in the Indian batting line up and the management’s failure to identify the right talent for red ball cricket.
“More than postmortem, it is important to recognize talent here. It is important for every team to move forward. I believe that the kind of batting that the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara, Rahane and Rahul have done in this series, they are 10 times better cricketers. Kohli needs to bring the best out of his players. It is a big responsibility of a captain to take the players along as you move ahead.
“If the captain puts his arms around a player’s shoulder and says that he wants the player to win him games, the performance will automatically improve. That atmosphere needs to be there. Identification of talent is very important,”
The president of Bengal cricket feels that it is down to the selectors to make a statement by allotting players who are technically sound when it comes to overseas conditions.
“Selectors must see who are the players who make runs outside the sub-continent. They should give those players an opportunity in India. It shouldn’t be the other way round. All the big stars of Indian cricket have made runs outside the sub-continent. And if you see, a player like KL Rahul has hit centuries in both Australia and England. So, he should be given an opportunity. Yes, there should be pressure, but it shouldn’t be so much that the player breaks down. The selectors have to show this balance,” he explained.
The 46 year old was quick to praise KL Rahul for a fine display of batting last evening.
“Rahul batted really well. There was pressure on him and I am surprised that it took him so long to score runs as he is a quality player. Broad troubled him in this series, but I am happy with his showing because I feel there is a place for him in this team as an opener. You can say that it was a little late in the day, but it can definitely act as a motivation for the youngster.”
“Cannot blame any individual as such, but as an opener it is important to score runs in overseas conditions. If the opener gives you a good start, the ball gets older when the middle-order comes in to bat. Since Dhawan hasn’t done well, India might need to look at another opener outside the sub-continent,” he said.
Ganguly believes that it was the intent of the Indian batters in the fourth innings which made them look in control for majority of the day.
“Sometimes when your back is against the wall, you need to come out and play positively. And that is exactly what Rahul, Pant and Ajinkya Rahane did, they played fearless cricket. This is a good sign, even though you can say that the performance has come very late in the series. But you must applaud the efforts of the trio,” he concurred.