Both Smith and Kohli have made errors in leadership, says former Australia coach John Buchanan

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Both Smith and Kohli have made errors in leadership, says former Australia coach John Buchanan

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SportsCafe Desk


Former Australian coach John Buchanan feels that both Steve Smith and Virat Kohli have made plenty of errors in their leadership skills and still have some way to go before they perfect that. He has also said that the DRS needs to be reviewed significantly to keep the integrity of the game alive.

The ongoing series between India and Australia has come under severe criticism for more reasons than one. While both the teams have shown exceptional skills on the field, the acrimony and antics made the headlines. 

Buchanan, who coached the Australian side with a lot of success in between 1999 to 2007, believes that both Smith and Kohli have a long way to go before they perfect their leadership skills.

"Every leader has his or her specific styles. What is more important for team leaders is that they are men of integrity, lead by example in every action and behavior," Buchanan told TOI.

He added, "I think both gentlemen know that they have made errors in leadership if we are analyzing their respective performances in this regard and using 100% as the only acceptable grade."

Putting all the doubts of Smith’s leadership traits to rest, Buchanan said, "I think there is little doubt that he is the best captaincy choice for Australia. With guidance of coach Darren Lehmann, high-performance manager Pat Howard and significant voices around him at various times, his leadership skills are improving.”

In the ongoing series, the DRS has come under the scanner and while India failed to use it properly in the first two Tests, Smith’s  referral from the dressing room made things even worse. Buchanan doesn’t seem to be favoring the DRS now. He believes that the system needs to be looked at thoroughly and umpires' call must not be questioned.

"I am not a supporter of DRS as a means to enhance the adjudication of certain decisions during the course of a game. I think because of its inaccuracies and inadequacies, it can incite unnecessary tensions on-field between captains, teams and between players and umpires," said the former coach.

"If we are to retain the integrity of the game, then DRS and other decision-making aids need significant review. If nothing else, the game should be managed by the umpires only. There should be no questioning of the umpires' decisions by emotionally charged players," added Buchanan.

Buchanan has said that this series can also be a pretty good lesson for the corporate houses in the country. He explained, "Businesses can take many lessons from observing sport, and especially cricket. Two of the most important aspects to watch are - how both captains go about harnessing the powers and abilities of each member of their teams. The second (aspect) is how well each leader has been able to keep themselves removed from the emotion of the game, often driven by scoreboard pressures and make decisions consistently throughout the heat of battle.”

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