Ajit Wadekar: Indian team should consider themselves losers for losing a gem like Kumble

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Ajit Wadekar: Indian team should consider themselves losers for losing a gem like Kumble

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SportsCafe Desk


Former Indian skipper Ajit Wadekar bashed the Indian team terming them "losers" for giving up Anil Kumble as the head coach. The 76-year old lashed out at Indian skipper Virat Kohli calling him immature and sought explanations regarding what changed his opinion on Kumble during the one-year tenure.

India are about to take on West Indies in the second ODI of a five-match series but the focal point of Indian cricketing fraternity still remains to be Anil Kumble's resignation as the head coach. Kumble stepped down as the Indian coach terming his relationship with Indian skipper Virat Kohli who had reservations about his style of man-management, 'untenable'. It also emerged that Kumble's call for a regimented and disciplined style from the players did not go down well with the whole team.

Ajit Wadekar, a former Indian captain and coach, joined the list of former players who have been criticising Kohli and the Indian team for the former leg-spinner's resignation.

“Kohli has been leading the Indian side for a while now, such behaviour wasn’t expected from him. “If you talk about India team, they should consider themselves losers. They have lost a gem like Kumble,” Wadekar told NDTV.

“Greatness and modesty should go along. And, in Virat’s case it is almost opposite. He should be feeling blessed to have Anil as a coach. If you are disciplined that doesn’t mean that you are not a good coach. I am sure Virat will realise soon what mistake he has made.

“I want to ask Kohli, how could he change his opinion in just one year? India were performing and giving positive results. Then why did he do this?”.”It’s a complete sign of immaturity." he added.

The BCCI had earlier invited applications for the position of the head coach and received submissions from former Indian opener Virender Sehwag, Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody, two-time Pakistan coach Richard Pybus, Indian batting legend Lalchand Rajput and Ganesh Dodda. Following Kumble's resignation, the Indian board invited fresh applications for the post and extended the deadline to 9th July.

However, Wadekar feels that Sehwag is the next best option for the Indian cricket team after Kumble.

If not Anil Kumble, then Virender Sehwag is the best option India can have. He has an attacking style approach towards the game and it will be good for India,” 

Under the former leg-spinner's supervision, India won an away Test series against West Indies followed by a loss in a T20 series in the Caribbean. India then returned home to register successive victories against New Zealand, England, Bangladesh and Australia and soar to the number one spot in Test rankings. The Men in Blue also finished runners-up in the recently concluded Champions Trophy tournament and Wadekar noted Kumble's record with the team and declared him as the best choice for the position of the head coach.

“I will still prefer Anil for this job. Let’s have a look at India’s performances in the past one year. The statistics itself give the answers. India’s domination in the past one year is commendable in Kumble’s reign. So, we must respect that,” Wadekar said.

“But, if you ask me as a Kumble’s successor, it should be Sehwag,” added Wadekar.

The 76-year old, who led India to first victories away from home in England and West Indies in 1971 and was also the coach of the Indian team from 1992 to 1996, heaped praises on Kumble for his persistent efforts during his career.

“When I was the coach of the Indian team, Anil Kumble was there. He was one of the nicest persons in the team. He was well educated, sincere and mad about his game. The only thing he focussed on – victory. I am amazed after his resignation,” Wadekar said.

“I have seen Kumble sweating it out on a particular delivery during the net sessions. He wanted perfection in everything. Jumbo is a real gem,” he said.

“I really don’t understand why a captain like Virat Kohli has gone to such extent. Kumble is the best man to handle Team India right now,” added the left-handed batsman.

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