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Have to be little more patient, says Sunny

Calcutta: Ravi Shastri’s appointment as team director has found Sunil Gavaskar’s support. Gavaskar has also backed captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who has come under fire after India’s disastrous 1-3 Test series loss in England.

“Dhoni has led from the front. He has batted at difficult positions. He has set an example. If that example has not been followed by the rest of the team, I don’t think you can blame the captain. I don't think there is any alternative to Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the foreseeable future and I would back him to carry on,” Gavaskar told a news channel.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday clipped the powers of coach Duncan Fletcher and appointed Shastri as team director.

Bowling coach Joe Dawes and fielding consultant Trevor Penney have been shown the door for the one-day series against England and Sanjay Bangar and Bharat Arun are now assistant coaches.

“I think the fact that they have appointed assistant coaches who have a very real interest in Indian cricket, as against a commercial interest of may be somebody else, will have an impact. Mind you they will not have an immediate bearing This is not instant coffee. So you just have to be a little more patient,” said Gavaskar.

“But having coaches as I have said, who have real interest, who have sweated it out on Indian cricket fields will make a huge difference. A huge difference in communication with the players, because communication is very important.

“There are a lot of our players who might not be able to understand some of the languages spoken by the non-Indians. So the fact that we now have Indian assistant coaches will make a huge difference,” he added.

Asked what Fletcher might be feeling at the moment, Gavaskar said: “I would not put myself in Duncan Fletcher’s shoes.

“I wouldn’t even bother to try to understand what he is thinking because I am just not interested in that. I was interested in what he did. I had made my views very clear on his coaching abilities a long time ago. And I won’t go further into this,” said Gavaskar.

Gavaskar was consultant of Team India during Sourav Ganguly’s tenure as captain and John Wright as coach in 2004. Asked to compare the present scenario with his role, he said: “I was a consultant in 2004. I did not want to encroach upon John Wright’s coaching.

“I stayed away from the team meetings. I did not get into the strategising part. Ravi has got a larger role to play.”