The main Indian cricket team is in England, getting ready for a grueling test series against the hosts. India sent a second-string team for the lower-ranked Sri Lanka white ball series due to the Covid restrictions of 14-day quarantine in every nation, and if India played the main team in Sri Lanka it would have jeopardized the series against England which was way more important and was given prominence. The media already has dubbed the Indian team in Sri Lanka as a ‘B’ grade team as it has many fringe players. Despite all the labeling, India won the first 2 ODI matches of a 3 match series with Sri Lanka, so the last match was used as a launchpad for 5 debutants (which is a record to give ODI caps to so many players at the same time), the logic behind this idea was to test players who were getting selected but were not included in the playing eleven, in other words, the ‘B’ grade team which arrived in Sri Lanka became a ‘C’ grade one on the final match of the series.
Rahul Dravid the acting coach gets laurels for a very successful stint as a batsman, wicket-keeper in testing circumstances, and also for being the right guru in shaping the careers of many youngsters over the years as the head of NCA. India were 147/3 after 23 overs out of 47 overs when rain halted play, as an opposing coach Rahul Dravid went to the ground and started giving tips to the Sri Lankan captain Dasun Shanaka as if he had come for ground and pitch inspection for his team. As a coach of India, he is supposed to limit his tips to the team to which he is a part and for which he is being paid, but Rahul trying to portray himself as a father figure of all young cricketers started giving free advice to the Sri Lankan captain. The result of this arrogance was there for everybody to see, immediately after the play started after rains Indian wickets started falling off in clumps, India struggled immediately thereafter and got bundled out for a paltry 225 runs, which became too easy for the Sri Lankan team to win after some struggle in the last overs.
Even this ‘C’ grade team was scoring well until the coach turned up for the opposite side. Sri Lanka is gathering points for their world cup qualifying in their last few matches, so maybe the coach felt it is time to help the opposition, but a ruthless team will be the one who thinks for themselves and not for the opposition, it is avoidable in a spotless career to get blames in this stage of his career. If you portray yourself to be too good, you look foolish later. The team should question the coach for the mindless act, this undermined their confidence, and also their chances to be selected for their country. The coach has let them down, and also the viewers and spectators of his country. If at all he wanted to help the Sri Lankan cricket captain, he could have given his tips after the match, not when the match is in progress. The BCCI boss Mr. Saurav Ganguly should instruct his former player and colleague to be within limits, not to be a father figure to all and sundry.
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