Madan Lal bashes "superstar" culture in Indian cricket following Anil Kumble's resignation

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Madan Lal bashes "superstar" culture in Indian cricket following Anil Kumble's resignation

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SportsCafe Desk


Former Indian coach Madan Lal lashed out at the superstar culture in Indian cricket and accused the players of being egoistic and not willing to accept mistakes. Lal further added that the Indian team needs people to nod at what they say and cited Sanjay Bangar's name as an example.

Madan Lal spoke to Cricketnext after Anil Kumble's resignation from the Indian head coach's post and expressed his disappointment at the same. The former Indian cricketer further added that he too had to leave the post due to similar reasons.

“These boys want ‘yes men’ around them. The likes of Bangar suit the bill for them as they are happy getting their egos boosted. Anybody who stands in their way and shows them the mirror or questions them back must go. This has always been the trend and happened even when I was coach (1996-97). I had a 45 per cent win record, but even then, I had to leave. The reason was that I was passionate about just winning and wasn’t an expert when it came to man-management. Coaching the Indian team is as much about managing the egos as it is about getting results.

“The sole reason why the foreign coaches succeeded was because they were happy to stay in the background and not question the authority of the senior players. Be it John Wright, Gary Kirsten or Duncan Fletcher. They were all successful and had long stints because they didn’t want to pose questions or challenge the big boys. The moment one of them did question, we saw what happened to him (hints at Greg Chappell). There is immense pressure when you are coaching such strong personalities and it is never easy,” he said.

Anil Kumble led India to successive wins at home against New Zealand, England, Bangladesh and Australia. India also won the away test series in West Indies and the former leg-spinner only accounted for a single series loss, that came against the West Indian team in a two-match Twenty20 series.

However, Lal was not surprised at the recent development and bashed the Indian superstar culture, as well as the Indian skipper Virat Kohli for the same.

“But this is the trend in Indian cricket. The players are the bosses. It has happened over the years and continues to happen. The captain decides everything and it isn’t like Australian or English cricket wherein the players and coaches are on the same pedestal and there is no ‘superstar’ culture. In India, if you have rubbed the captain the wrong way, you are as good as finished. While it is still not clearly known why and how the Kohli-Kumble relation went downhill, Kumble deserved better treatment.”

Moreover, Lal criticised Kohli for not thinking about the issue from a team's perspective as according to the former Indian cricketer a difference in opinion should not have forced the former leg-spinner to resign from his duty.

“Difference in opinion is nothing new. But then, the team should be priority. Look at the results that the Indian team achieved under Kumble and even then if he has to go, that is shameful to say the least. The BCCI did try its best and that was evident through the efforts of the Cricket Advisory Committee — comprising of Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman — but in the end, it was Kohli’s ego that won the battle. But it will be interesting to see how Kohli gells with the next coach as there is no guarantee that he will toe Kohli’s line,” he signed off.

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