Friday, October 16, 2009

After selection, BCCI says nothing at all

New Delhi: Does India's cricket establishment really respect its most prized possessions, the players? At least in the way Rahul Dravid, Venkatesh Prasad and Robin Singh were shown the door, that doesn't seem to be the case. Once again, no explanations were offered, and little respect shown to the men discarded.

In a cruel twist, on the day he was dumped from the Indian one-day team, Dravid had to turn out for Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Champions League, and did a great job of blocking the disappointment out, making 33 in 35 balls. And when in the field, he even allowed himself to be miked up and have a chat with the commentators.

The big question, of course, is was Dravid told beforehand that he was no longer needed in the one-day team, or did he too learn of his ouster from the media? As is the now established norm within the BCCI, the chairman of selectors ignored the media's pleas to explain the axing in this post-selection interaction.

Ironically, not just Dravid but the two other men sacked in the purge on Thursday had no inkling of what was to come. A one-line email was all the BCCI thought fit to send to announce the sacking of Venkatesh Prasad and Robin Singh as bowling and fielding coaches. A shell-shocked Prasad could only offer a feeble "I am hurt and disappointed" in response.

This isn't the first time that players or coaches have been sacked, but somehow the BCCI's method of doing this always leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Other cricket boards such as Australia and England always offer explanations to justify selections, leaving little room for the speculation and innuendo that has become so rampant in Indian cricket.

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