The Telegraph e-Paper
The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary

Sunny: Kohli should be given more responsibility

New Delhi: Former captain Sunil Gavaskar on Friday said that at least three senior cricketers may not be selected again for the Test team.

Gavaskar also said time has come for the likes of Virat Kohli to be handed more responsibility.

“I think at least three or four players might have played probably their last Test in Australia. I am saying this because India’s next Test is six-eight months away. Now the selectors should pick youngsters who would serve the country in the years down the line,” Gavaskar said.

He, however, refused to name the youngsters who would come in place of the senior players.

“That’s the selectors’ job, not mine,” said Gavaskar.

A sarcastic Gavaskar said that India will at last have the opportunity to score more runs than the Australians in any innings during the Test series if they score two more runs on Friday.

“Australia declared their second innings at 166 for five and India were 166 for six at stumps today. So if India score two more runs they will be ahead of Australia in the second innings,” he said.

Asked if he remembers any other instance when Indian batsmen were tied to knots by a slow bowler as has been done by Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon, Gavaskar said, “Indian batsmen got bogged down. There’s some sort of defeatist attitude hanging around, even the most experienced players have been affected by it.”

“There was an air of resignation. There was nothing like ‘let’s fight back, get down to doing something’. That’s why they are on the verge of their eight successive Test defeat overseas,” he told a television channel.

Gavaskar said that Kohli, who struck a century in the in Adelaide, should have been promoted to No. 3.

“Yes, he should have been promoted to No. 3. That opportunity has been missed. That (No. 3) is going to be his number in the years to come and he should have been given that slot in Adelaide,” said Gavaskar.

“Virat scored a hundred in Australia, the lone player to do so. May be his confidence could have stemmed the rot and might have protected the senior players who have been sorely out of form. They (seniors) could have been protected by him (Virat) and who knows the senior players would have done better in the last couple of days in Adelaide,” he said.

“India missed out on the chance to experiment with Kohli. The same thing happened in the West Indies and England. With some extra zip, India could have won the series in the West Indies 3-0. In England, they were flat-footed not only on the field but also in their thinking.”