With Seniors gone/going, is India heading the Windies way?
Indian Test team for long had revolved around fab-four -Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman and their iconic leg spinner Anil Kumble. After the retirement of Ganguly and Kumble, the void was obviously felt in Test performance with India not able to win a Test series against any of the major Test playing nation. And what has been embarrassing is the way they fell from the top. Since October 2008 they have won eight Test series and drew three. The stats look awesome don’t they? But it is not as impressive as it looks. Apart from beating Australia on their home soil, India have not won against the top rated teams in the world.
And when they were put to real test they failed miserably. Going as a number one team lot was expected out of them, but they flattered only to deceive. Touring weaker sides such as Bangladesh and West Indies and playing at home never actually could judge as to where do they stand when it comes to Test playing nations under seaming conditions. Then they were put to the acid test in England and they surrendered meekly to lose their number one spot to them. They were whitewashed and only saving grace was Rahul Dravid’s performance in the tour. Nevertheless nothing could stop them and they were handed the most embarrassing defeats of recent times. If that was not enough, they were thrashed in the following series Down Under and that prompted Dravid to retire from International cricket.
Now keeping these two tours in mind Sourav Ganguly, head of BCCI’s technical committee has suggested a new model for the domestic season aimed at strengthening it. The proposed model would see each team playing at least eight matches which would increase the depth of the bench of the Test team. Ganguly, Kumble and Dravid have already retired and it does not look that someone is ready yet to take over their place in the side and Sachin and Laxman are at the fag-end of their career and it is anytime that they can call it a day.
Going by where India is headed, it does not look so bright and it would not be harsh to say that India might even meet the fate that West Indies has met in the last two decades. West Indies was one of the most dominant team of an era and is now almost on the brink of losing their existence in the Test cricket world. Lot is to be blamed to their management for that as the quality of the side has deteriorated with time. And it started after players like Brian Lara, Courtney Walsh, Curtly Ambrose left the team. Such was the impact that they could never rise to the kind of level they once were.
As a matter of fact every team sees their experienced players leave and hand over the baton to their juniors. Australia have seen likes of Matthew Hayden and Justin Langer leave Test arena but they handled the situation quite well. Well the reason to that is strong domestic circuit. They get ample amount of experience playing in the domestic circuit that they can instantly turns things on their head as soon as they get an international call up.
India never happened to do so and all they concentrate is on a strong IPL season. It is a well seen fact that the number of players who perform well in IPL get selected is much than those who do in Ranji. So this kind of attitude does not somehow motivate the new players to adapt to the technique required to play test and that is where it proves detrimental. India require to play more Ranji matches and possess the require skill set if they want to keep their head held up high in the Test arena and reclaim their number one spot.
Source: Indian Sports News
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