Sachin Tendulkar vs Greg Chappell: Rahul Dravid Refuses to Take Sides
Sachin Tendulkar, in his soon-to-be-released autobiography 'Playing It My Way', has written that Chappell visited his home just before the 2007 World Cup and suggested about making him the Indian captain at Dravid's expense.
Former India captain Rahul Dravid on Tuesday said he won't be commenting on each and everything batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar has written in his autobiography, adding that it would be unfair to comment on any issue without reading the book.
Tendulkar, in his soon-to-be-released autobiography 'Playing It My Way', has written that Chappell visited his home just before the 2007 World Cup and suggested about making him the Indian captain at Dravid's expense.
"I have made some other comments yesterday [on Monday] on what I have information about, which is that it was a private conversation between two people. So, it is hard for me to make a comment on that and actually say what happened or what didn't happen. It is up for the two individuals to figure out what happened. I don't really want to make a comment on that sort of conversation or whether it happened or whether it didn't happen or what happened.
"So, the rest of the book, look I would like to read it. There is a lot of the other stuff. Without reading it is quite unfair to make a comment and after I have read it, if I do feel like I want to say something then I will," he told reporters on the sidelines of a Gillette event.
Tendulkar had also suggested to the Board to send the team without the coach to the World Cup in 2007 and asked if he agreed with the view in hindsight, the former Karnataka batsman said he didn't have to comment on everything the batting icon says.
"In what context Sachin has mentioned, what has he said, it is hard to make a comment on something that you are hearing from the media and getting snippets of. So, wait to see what the context is and what this thing was. I am not going to comment on every single thing that Sachin Tendulkar says. I don't need to be able to be commenting on everything that Tendulkar says," he said.
Asked about the upcoming series in Australia, the 41-year old said youngsters would have an opportunity to learn Down Under.
"I think it is a great challenge and hopefully some of these young Indian batsmen, irrespective of what happens on the tour, there is a lot of learnings to be had on a tour of Australia. Something I loved going to, irrespective of success or failure, I always came back from a tour of Australia feeling like I had been in a contest and I had learnt something," he said.
Dravid said: "I think it is going to be a great challenge. I think Australia is a fantastic place to play cricket, especially in the summer because it's just the nature of the wickets, the kind of support, you know the crowds that come to watch the Test matches and the challenge that awaits the Indian team.
"Obviously, the wickets you expect them to have pace and bounce and good carry. While it is not the easiest challenge, one of the good things about playing in Australia is that their wickets are quite true. Unlike England where the ball can seam and swing sometimes throughout the day, once you get set in Australia you can score runs," he added.
The 'Wall' hoped the Indian side would put up a better show in Australia and that it has all the makings of being a good team in the future.
"I am hoping there will be better results. If you look at India's record in the last three series, we came close in South Africa, we came close in New Zealand and then we won a Test match in England. I think that is positive. I feel at least they are going in the right direction. They have got some experience, this young team, but it is not going to be easy. I am not going to be standing here and saying India will win the series but I am hoping that they put up a good performance.
"The first part of the England tour went really well. Obviously the back three Test matches India struggled. But I am hoping that they will have a little more consistency in this series and irrespective of the results, actually play some good cricket and competitive cricket then this could be the making of really good Indian side for the future," he said.
Youngsters like Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara were tested in England and Dravid said they would have to figure out how to play on and outside the off stump.
"I think the real challenges there are going to be is again on the on and outside the off stump and the bounce that you have to counter. Knowing where your off stump is going to be critically important even in Australia because if you play ball on the fifth stump, there is a good opportunity that you might actually end up nicking to the slips and edges do carry there.
"So, knowing where your off stump is very important as it is in Australia and being positive. I think scoring runs in Australia when you get the opportunity, actually cashing in, and having a strong backfoot game, I think is the few things not only Kohli or Pujara but I think the whole batting unit would have to work on," he said.
He further said this young team was similar to the side in the late 90s and has to be given time to develop well.
"I think you have got to give this young team a bit of time. You need to be patient. It happens with young teams. If you look at this team, I think this team is like the team we were in late 90s and early 2000, a lot of young players coming through. And if this team develops and grows, then you could really see them have a good run in the future.
"You are going to need patience. You are going to have to see some tough times and some tough results but if you are patient then hopefully these guys will pay you back," Dravid said.
He was impressed with his statemate K L Rahul and said if he is presented with an opportunity to play for the country, it will augur well for Indian cricket.
"There are a lot of good young players and I think Rahul has done well this year isn't he? He has got 1000 runs in the season and he has got twin hundreds in the Duleep Trophy, so I really hope, if he gets an opportunity, he is able to do well and it will be great for Indian cricket," he said.