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Since 1st March, 1999
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'We haven't seen the best of Dravid'
- The Champions Trophy is 'pretty open', feels former Australian captain Greg Chappell

Southampton: Official awards hadn't been introduced when Greg Chappell's majestic batting fetched thousands of runs but, had there been something from the International Cricket Council (ICC), the former Australian captain may have bagged the top inaugural award.

As it turns out, the ICC has only just chosen to recognise and salute the biggest performers and Team India vice-captain Rahul Dravid bagged the two most coveted awards: Test Player of the Year and Player of the Year.

'Well, given his achievements in Australia and Pakistan, Dravid deserved both... It has been a fair selection and I'm happy for him,' Greg told The Telegraph on Saturday afternoon.

In Southampton for TV commitments, he added: 'Of course, my opinion is that we haven't seen the best of Dravid... Perhaps, that's going to come about in the coming year... He has it in him to raise his game even more.'

Greg, however, declined to comment on the ICC's Test Team of the Year and its ODI Team of the Year. 'It's irrelevant... After all, both selections have been based on the views of a panel... They are entitled to their pick.'

According to Greg, the ongoing Champions Trophy is 'pretty open.'

As he put it: 'We expect Australia to beat New Zealand and, so, they should be in the semi-finals... As for the other three teams, it's tough making a call... India, for example, must beat Pakistan...'

Incidentally, Greg said India's form going into the tournament didn't worry him: 'It happens... After two very fine Test series' (in Australia and Pakistan), quickly getting into top gear in limited-overs cricket can get tough... Also, Sachin (Tendulkar) missed the tri-series in Holland and the NatWest Challenge...'

Greg, who has signed-up as a consultant with the Pakistan Cricket Board, recently worked in the US too. 'I didn't specifically interact with individual players, but worked with the national body there...'

He will, though, be watching the Clayton Lamberts ' yes, the one-time West Indies batsman ' with some interest when the rookies face-off with the world champions at the Rose Bowl here on Monday.

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