Our national cricketers are the best examples of the term “core competence”. We do one thing only. (Of course, whether we do that well or not is a debatable issue in itself.) It seems that we consider all-rounders as people who cannot do anything properly. It is surprising that our team is able to perform as well without even one quality all-rounder.
Teams that have performed consistently over the past few years have in their ranks batsman and bowlers who can double up as their other self. Flintoff, Kallis, Pollock, Jayasuriya, Gilchrist, Symonds… The only Indian we can add to that list is Sachin Tendulkar. And his absence was felt badly in Sri Lanka. We had to play with four bowlers and expect Virender Sehwag to score a hundred and pick 4 for 33 in ten overs.
Why is Ganguly not bowling? Why not ask Yuvraj to practise bowling in the nets? Or ask Pathan and Zaheer to firm up their bat-wielding skills?
Some in the media have already started criticising coach Greg Chappell. Which is quite bad because he isn’t exactly inheriting a fortune. But Mr. Chappell has an important task at hand – to develop a 11-man team that comprises of 9 batsmen, 7 bowlers, 1 wicket-keeper and 10 good fielders. Instead of saying “It is okay to lose, because we are preparing for the World Cup. So don’t expect to win a single game before March 2007…” and get bashed in the media, our man from Australia better started developing more competencies in our players.
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