New Delhi: Former India captains felt Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s “tactical errors” and the poor form of some senior players were the main reasons for India's exit from the World Twenty20.
While Ravi Shastri said the national selectors should have given opportunity to the youngsters, Sunil Gavaskar felt Indian cricket is at the crossroads and also criticised Dhoni's decisions.
Here’s what the former captains had to say (in alphabetical order):
Sunil Gavaskar: Indian cricket is now at the crossroads. We have not been able to do well in the two shorter formats of the game in which we have dominated. We won the World Twenty20 in 2007 and then won the 50-over World Cup last year. But we have been struggling since then. This is something we have to look into. We have to put our heads together and find out why this has been happening.
I’m not saying that there should be an inquiry or a report being sought from the coach. I’m also not saying that heads will have to be rolled and there is need for change of captaincy.
What I feel is we may have gone wrong in the tactical aspect. You need to tweak here and there. I feel we went wrong tactically in the tri-series in Australia and then Asia Cup and now World Twenty20. We could have done things differently but I’m not suggesting change in captaincy.
Anil Kumble: There is no point when your best bowler (Ravichandran Ashwin) bowls when there are only 25 runs to defend. So that was surprising.
Out of five top batsmen, you expect one to fire and make impact, score a 18-ball 50 but it did not happen.
Ravi Shastri: I would have given opportunity to young players. Ashok Dinda, Umesh Yadav and Ishant Sharma… We have all forgotten Ishant but he still has a big role to play in Indian cricket. If you look at batting, Ambati Rayudu, Ajinkya Rahane, Murali Vijay are young guys who have shown promise. It’s time to get a better mix of youth and experience. If you look at Zaheer Khan, he needs to be rested.
Dilip Vengsarkar: Luck did not favour us. The T20 format is such that luck plays a more important role than skill.
Ajit Wadekar: Probably we could have played an additional spinner with Harbhajan Singh’s return to the team. I felt the team deserved to be at least in the semi-finals.