Rahul Dravid reveals that he is uncomfortable with the comments that Indian star makes in public

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Rahul Dravid : Sometimes when I read what Virat says, I cringe

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SportsCafe Desk


Rahul Dravid has revealed that he sometimes feels very uncomfortable with some of the statements that Virat Kohli makes in public but quickly added that it worked for him. Dravid also explained that even though Anil Kumble was a terrific coach, the true power in cricket was still with the players.

While speaking at the Bangalore Literature Festival, Dravid stressed the importance of staying authentic and not assuming a persona for youngsters. The former Indian captain was one of the most respected players in international cricket and it wasn’t just because of the incredible numbers he was putting up match after match. His grace both on and off the pitch, especially in a country like India, has since been lost in the madness of global cricket.

“People ask me why I didn’t behave like Virat when I played for India. I would have been inauthentic to myself had I gotten tattoos and behaved like Virat,” Dravid said.

“Sometimes, before an Australia series, Virat says the most outrageous things. I read it in the newspaper and cringe. But then, I feel that he wants that tough contest, and wants that lip on the field, because it gets the best out of him.

“You can’t blame him, because it works so very well for him. But that may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Ajinkya Rahane, for example, is very different. What worries me is that a lot of young kids tend to copy Virat, without realising that they are not being authentic to who they really are.”

Don’t be critical of Dhoni; even Ashish Nehra has gotten to decide when he will retire

There has been a lot of chatter about whether MS Dhoni still deserves a place in the current Indian team after his performances have dropped over the last few years, with many going as far as to say that the Ranchi player would decide on when he wanted to hang up the proverbial boots. Journalist Rajdeep Sardesai put the same question to Dravid, who left the people in a fit of laughter with his answer.

“Don’t be critical of Dhoni; even Ashish Nehra has gotten to decide when he will retire,” Dravid remarked.

“How do we know that Dhoni can choose when to retire? Just because some people say so in the media, it does not mean it is necessarily true.”

While Indian cricket has had a brilliant year on the field with the Test team securing the top spot of yet another year and the ODI team making it all the way to the final of the Champions Trophy, along with series victories over England, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Australia, and New Zealand, all has not been well off it. The Kohli-Kumble saga played out in a way that left the BCCI and the CoA scratching their head about what went wrong.

Look, players are more powerful than coaches. When we were players, we were more powerful than coaches. Coaches get sacked — that’s the reality.

While the questions of player power and apparent ignorance of the BCCI came fore, fans were left picking sides at a time when Indian cricket was blossoming.

“The whole thing was played out in the media, which was very unfortunate for Anil. Anil has won more Test matches for India than anyone I know; he is an absolute legend,” Dravid added.

“Look, players are more powerful than coaches. When we were players, we were more powerful than coaches. Coaches get sacked — that’s the reality.

“As India-A and India under-19 coach, I know I will get the boot one day. But it has to be done the right way.”

Dravid also recalled how he was star struck by E.A.S. Prasanna, who lived next to him in Bangalore while growing up and revealed how he would try to manufacture a conversation with the Indian legend.

Mr. Prasanna lived diagonally opposite my house in Indiranagar. I would peep out of my window to see him walk his dog, and say, ‘Wow! That’s Mr. Prasanna!’. I didn’t have the courage to talk to him,” Dravid said, with Prasanna sitting next to him on the stage.

“It was only when my name starting appearing in the newspapers that Mr. Prasanna says to me, ‘You are Rahul Dravid. I’ve read about you’.

“After that, every time he would come out of his house, I too would come out and pretend that I just happened to be there. I would say, ‘Oh, hello sir’ and start a conversation.”

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