Ex-Players Call for Axing Seniors, Changes in System

New Delhi
Ex-Players Call for Axing Seniors, Changes in System
The Indian cricket team's humiliating Test series defeat against Australia today drew sharp reactions from former players who called for drastic changes in the system, axing of some senior players and preparing sporting pitches in the country.

Former captain Sunil Gavaskar questioned the temperament of some senior players, saying that only skill would not do and they need to sort out their problems and make a comeback.

"I think a lot of soul searching needs to be done. We need to look at first class cricket structure, pitches that we play, scheduling of matches, it has to be a really long hard look at everything," said Gavaskar.

"We have the best cricketing brains to help take Indian cricket forward. Their experience has to be utilised and no regional politics should come in. We have to ensure that India does not face in future the grim situation that we faced in the last couple of tours," he said.

Gavaskar said some players should be given a break so that they can analyse their deficiencies and come back strongly.

"I think the selection committee will have to bring some changes, some players who have been having a bad run need to be given a break. More than the skill, they are temperamentally out of form also. So they need a breather to analyse what they are doing wrong and correct it to make a comeback," he said.

"As cricketers, they need to look at the shots that they played, the line and length they bowled, have a self appraisal, get the answers looking at themselves," he added.

Another former captain Sourav Ganguly felt that a combination of issues, including the loss of form of ageing players and technical deficiencies of some others, have led to the Indian team's debacle in Australia.

"There are many reasons for Indian team's disappointing performance in Australia. Some players are ageing and they have been so good for over a period of time but at 39 they are no longer young for Test cricket," he said.

"Some have been found out technically like Gautam Gambhir and Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Virender Sehwag has not been clicking in this series. So India need to rectify the problems quickly otherwise they will go down the line," said Ganguly.

Ganguly, however, refused to blame Indian Premier League for India's debacle.

Former Test cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar said the selectors needed to choose players carefully.

"The selectors need to choose players carefully keeping in mind the players who can adjust to conditions, can change their game according to the pace and bounce outside even if they haven't scored enough runs in domestic cricket," he said.

"We need to progress step by step. Dhoni's batting is a concern, he is low in confidence and it is affecting his captaincy but we should not take any drastic step," he said.

Former cricketer Nikhil Chopra said that India's performance in Australia has left much to be desired and it was time for some tough decisions to be taken.

"It is a matter of great concern. It is time we analyse what is going wrong and take corrective steps", Chopra said.

"I think we have to produce good sporting wickets in India so that our batsmen have no difficulty in adjusting to conditions abroad. We make turners in India and when our batsmen go abroad, they struggle.

"If we make sporting wickets, some oppositions teams may come and beat us, but it will help our batsmen in the long run", Chopra contended.
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