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The Realist

Good article: India’s Test Squad Needs Separate Coach, New Ideas & Players

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This was meant to be the year that defined Virat Kohli’s captaincy and India’s cricket.

But what it has done so far is brought us more of the same. Indian cricket always takes one step forward and many steps back.

We have lost a Test series in both South Africa and England, this despite being in the running for all of the Tests in both countries. It all simply boils down to poor planning, lack of detailing and of course stubborn thinking on the part of the think-tank.

Multiple Issues

Selection of the playing XI is too often being dictated by personal likes, dislikes and a strange sense of belief in a certain set of players, despite consistent failures. The odd victory seems to lull the team and its think tank into a sense of self-belief. In many ways we represent English team of the 1990s, who won an odd Test away from home, but never quite delivered the knockout punch to win series consistently.

All of it clearly shows that we have clearly not learnt our lessons from the previous tours. And what is that down to? Lack of planning, understanding of the situations and lack of growth in some of the players.

Dhawan is Done

It is definitely therefore time to bid goodbye to few of the cricketers, especially when it comes to their Test careers. Top of that list is definitely Shikhar Dhawan, who is very lucky to have been picked for the tour in the first place. Dhawan surely has had many failures away from home, but he simply manages to cash in on his white ball performances and gets himself a place in the Test XI.

Five years is a long time in a cricketing span and we have to move on beyond Dhawan to some of the younger players like Prithvi Shaw. Like Murali Vijay has been discarded for good, it is time for Dhawan to go from red ball cricket too.

No All-round Hope

Similarly, it is inherently wrong to place all our seam bowling all-rounder hopes in one man, Hardik Pandya. He is still a work in progress and there is need to find other options. There has to be a sense of competition for Pandya to want to fight for his place with performances. England are lucky because they have a number of all-rounders including Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Sam Curran and Chris Woakes who do more than one thing on the field. India has been unlucky in having just one, whereas England had nearly four. That’s been the difference.

Admit The Problem

Listening to the captain Virat Kohli post the Test, an impression was gained that he is looking at the glass as half-full rather than half-empty. That clearly means he is not acknowledging the problem at hand.  While we look for short-term band-aid solutions to our woes, there is a need for long-term vision too. There is no attention being paid to that. Are we happy living with the tag of poor travellers forever? We cannot hide behind the fact that most sides are struggling away from home. That is a defeatist attitude and does not serve any purpose whatsoever.

Time For Shastri to Give Up Test Job

There needs to be a long-term plan to solve this riddle. For that what you need is a dedicated Coach for the Test squad who is divorced from the glamour of white ball cricket and whose only remit is planning, plotting to do well away from home in the longer versions. This job is certainly not for someone like Ravi Shastri who is anyways not someone who is good at detailing. What you need is a nuts and bolts man who can plan to the final detail. Someone like a John Wright spent hours during his India coaching job, watching, looking and observing talent in domestic cricket. Wright was the brains behind the outward aggression of skipper Sourav Ganguly, along with vice-captain Rahul Dravid.

India needs to recreate that kind of balance to achieve the successes that the era of 2000s managed albeit in a small way.

Long-term Vision?

We need to ask ourselves if we really have the appetite and the need to be the best Test team in the world in all conditions. Indian cricket needs to undo 86 years of legacy and that will certainly take a lot of hard work. The question is anyone really interested in putting in that kind of hard work?

 

https://www.thequint.com/sports/cricket/changes-needed-in-indian-test-team-virat-kohli-pandya-shastri

 

:nod:

 

Edited by The Realist

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Some good points. But in India, which does not have a great sports culture, we want to make a Dravid in to a Sehwag and vice versa. So if a Dravid scores slowly we blame him for that and not scoring at a higher SR. And when a Sehwag gets out to an attacking stroke, we blame him for not showing enough patience like a Dravid. There are no perfect players. 

 

In a team, you would generally have a bunch of players. Some of them would be consistent. Some of them would be inconsistent but on their day turn the game around. Some of them would be playing in the snail mode. Some of them would attack at any given opportunity. 

 

Once we understand that there are no perfect players, we can move ahead in sports.

 

 

Edited by zen

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Why only in test matches? Honestly problems in Odis are bigger than test matches,so why only in test matches??, in Odis our middle order is filled with ttfs like jadhav,dhoni,pandey even Rahul gives no confidence, so middle order is almost nonexistent, we have only one good strike bowler in bumrah and I really don't know how our spinners will do in England.

Shastri should be permanently sacked.  

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3 minutes ago, GolGappe said:

We don't have a coach.

 

Somebody who sat in an air-conditioned commentary box for 20 years after retirement doesn't become a coach overnight.

  

Tendulkar, Dada, and Laxman let India down badly when they allowed Kohli to rekt Kumble and handpick the next coach of India.

Ganguly was completely against Shastri but bowed down to Virat I believe.Unfortunately coach like Jennings who can instill discipline in the side won't work with this bunch as they felt Kumble was too strict for these pampered Rock stars.

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I can't imagine anyone else in this squad complaining about Kumble's coaching style. Kohli is a fitness freak but lot of other players have also put lot of effort into getting fitter and stronger as well.

 

I believe it was a clash of two strong personalities and Kumble was forced to cave in.

 

Tendulkar's tacit backing of Shastri pretty much sealed the deal.

 

BCCI should have been lot more forceful about selection of coaching squad while letting Shastri enjoy the cushy role of team director.

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2 hours ago, speedheat said:

Why only in test matches? Honestly problems in Odis are bigger than test matches,so why only in test matches??, in Odis our middle order is filled with ttfs like jadhav,dhoni,pandey even Rahul gives no confidence, so middle order is almost nonexistent, we have only one good strike bowler in bumrah and I really don't know how our spinners will do in England.

Shastri should be permanently sacked.  

Yeah! Atleast there is some hope looking at our test team. Our ODI team especially batting is sh!t. It's Dhawan, Rohit and kohli show. 

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For tests,you need 6 proper batsman of whom 2 can roll their arms to rest pacers.The fact that all drawable matches are being lost is too regressive.We have never won 3 tests in a 5 match series.It's usually 1 or 2 wins with lots of draws to save the series.That mentality to not lose a test at any conditions is needed.If you take the game to 5th day,you are tiring their bowlers & getting more match practice.

No Ashwin/Jadeja needed in SENA countries.Play 4 pacers.They will learn to manage over rate if they bowl as a group for a long time,just like how other countries do it.

I feel most Indian players are playing in the wrong formats.Pant,Rahul,Pandya,Dhawan are best suited to LOIs & T20s. Pandya should consider himself more of a batsman who can bowl.Team needs a lower middle order finisher who can bat at higher SR.His batting is more important. Manish,Kedar,Rayudu are not suited to T20s/ODIs. 

Pick 2 of your best first class openers.Give them 2 to 3 series & then decide.Right now Mayank should get his chance.Prithvi Shaw will fail if he opens.Find 2 more guys.

 

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It’s a matter of things clicking at the right time. The bowling by our quicks (usually a weak point) was really good. Our fielding in the slips (another historically weak area) was good. So the team did try to work on their weak points. Problems is that the Indian batting failed collectively. (Batting was supposed to be our strong suit) Don’t know what a captain or coach does when for the most part- the heart of the Indian batting- Vijay, Dhawan, Rahul, Pujara, Rahane are having a rough time with it. For each guy, India will have to decide whether he should be persisted with or whether they need to be replaced. For example, one could make an argument that this could be a great learning experience for Rahul that could pay dividends later. Kohli struggled similarly in England in 2014. Pandya was always a gamble. I think India figured that they could gamble on him learning on the job because there was this cushion of a strong core batting line up. Cushion didn’t pan out. Pant is also a new guy who might come good later. So while calls do need to be made, I don’t think India did anything “bad” with the selection of the team for this series. We always fall for the trap of believing that the guy on the bench would have done a better job. Maybe yes, maybe no. But I don’t see anything that India did that was reckless or irresponsible. Also, if many fail with the bat, I don’t think Kumble would have made much of a difference either. He isn’t going to be able to fix batting techniques on the fly. It could’ve been worse. With Kumble around, maybe Kohli struggles too.

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8 hours ago, GolGappe said:

I can't imagine anyone else in this squad complaining about Kumble's coaching style. Kohli is a fitness freak but lot of other players have also put lot of effort into getting fitter and stronger as well.

 

I believe it was a clash of two strong personalities and Kumble was forced to cave in.

 

Tendulkar's tacit backing of Shastri pretty much sealed the deal.

 

BCCI should have been lot more forceful about selection of coaching squad while letting Shastri enjoy the cushy role of team director.

Clash was never about cricket or onfield activities. It was more personal between Kohli and Kumble.

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17 hours ago, speedheat said:

Why only in test matches? Honestly problems in Odis are bigger than test matches,so why only in test matches??, in Odis our middle order is filled with ttfs like jadhav,dhoni,pandey even Rahul gives no confidence, so middle order is almost nonexistent, we have only one good strike bowler in bumrah and I really don't know how our spinners will do in England.

Shastri should be permanently sacked.  

Don't worry similar article would surface post Asia cup and all these pretenders would be exposed the baap of all of them would still screw us  in wc19, but people would still sing&dance how he hits 6 against mighty Lankans to win us the WC .This process continues forever and ever nothing gonna change.

Edited by raki05

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14 minutes ago, Lannister said:

Nothing will change. The whole system is  corrupt and directionless. We have to make do with it and shouldn't expect much from Indian cricket. 

Just a reflection of our society where corruption is normal in any aspect of life  to be honest.

Edited by Switchblade

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8 hours ago, rkt.india said:

Clash was never about cricket or onfield activities. It was more personal between Kohli and Kumble.

I believe in the thid test against Australia Kumble wanted Kuldeep to play against Australia but Kohli refused it and when he was injured then Rahane while captain selected Kuldeep.They were not on talking terms since England series at home.

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3 hours ago, Switchblade said:

The current set of players need a coach who can keep their egos in check and keep them disciplined enough not a person like Shastri to encourage their delusions and behaviour.

Exactly! This team is certainly deluded and their coach is the biggest reason for that 

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12 minutes ago, Adi BB said:

Exactly! This team is certainly deluded and their coach is the biggest reason for that 

Always want India to win but if it ends 2-3 I am afraid The delusions will be at an all time high for coach and his team you are going to hear we came this close to winning xyz.I give Virat credit under him we do compete but concede the advantage first test was ours but we lost it.

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1 hour ago, raki05 said:

Shastri acts more like a pimp to this team than a coach. Who supply daru and items to the team also bark occasionally against critics on a need basis like a proper watch dog.

He is better off as a commentator or a pr agent for Bcci or the team coach should be someone who has the stature not someone whose real job is cheerleading.

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