Kapil Dev was in Kolkata to talk about golf and support the ICC RCGC Open as a board member of the Indian professional tour. But though golf is a “new passion”, lack of domain knowledge made it “impractical” for him to talk about it, he said. So, the conversation with the media on Friday was largely on cricket, even though the sport has been only “five percent” of his 62-year life.
Kapil Dev: Ravindra Jadeja Is A Fabulous Cricketer And Has Improved As Batsman Not As Bowler
Rahul Dravid should be judged only after three years, and Kapil Dev said he is keeping his fingers crossed that “he will do better as a coach than as cricketer.” And when someone tried tempting Kapil Dev by paraphrasing Ravi Shastri’s comment that the team he coached was the best, it was met with: “Do you doubt him?” Kapil Dev did take the poser on India’s inability to win an ICC tournament since 2013.
“Jinx? There is no jinx. I don’t mind if they come to the final if they are among the top two-three teams. Australia has so much passion for cricket and it took them almost 15 years (14) to win the T20 World Cup. Wins will come if you keep trying harder and harder,” said the former India captain.
Asked on contemporary all-rounders, Kapil Dev said he follows cricket for fun now and so would restrict his answer to Indian players.
“Ravindra Jadeja is a fabulous cricketer. Unfortunately, he has improved as a batsman but has come down as a bowler. When he started out, he was a far better bowler but now he is a far better batsman, and every time India needs him, he will get runs but he is not performing as a bowler as he used.”
Hardik Pandya, Kapil Dev said, cannot be counted as an all-rounder because he has “to do both jobs to be considered” one.
“Let him bowl. He has come out of an injury and is an extremely important batsman for the country but he has to perform as a bowler before he can be judged as an allrounder.”
Too much should not be read into Hanuma Vihari touring South Africa with India A, he said. “At least he has got a chance to play in South Africa. He will come back. I don’t think it will affect his zest to play. In our time, Mohinder Amarnath and Anshuman Gaekwad would make 20 comebacks.”
Ravindra Jadeja has amassed 2195 runs besides picking up 227 scalps in 57 Tests. He averages 34.3 with the bat in Tests and 25.09 with the ball in the longest format. Ravindra Jadeja scored 50 and picked a wicket only despite bowling 33 overs.
Kapil Dev Hopes Shreyas Iyer Will Do Justice In Tests
Shreyas Iyer has come out with “flying colours”, scoring 105 on Test debut after waiting “four-five years to play”.
“Hopefully, he will do justice to the position.”
Kapil Dev, who had a heart attack in October 2020, said, “life is beautiful” now.
“Never expected after retirement from cricket that I would have a life like this. I can actually say, my life is now one step better after I stopped playing cricket. Playing for the country is not everything. Cricket is five per cent (of my life). 95% of life is beautiful though it is that five per cent that led to this 95%.”
Shreyas Iyer has featured in 22 ODIs and 32 T20Is and averaged 42.78 and 27.61 in the two formats, respectively, before making his Test debut, 4 years after his limited-overs debut in 2017. Shreyas Iyer scored 105 before being dismissed by Tim Southee.
His runs came off 171 balls after smashing 2 sixes and 13 boundaries. Shreyas Iyer on Friday became the 16th Indian batter to score a century on Test debut. Shreyas Iyer was presented his maiden Test cap by Sunil Gavaskar on Day 1 of the Kanpur Test against New Zealand.
India reached 14/1 at Stump’s on the 3rd day to lead by 63 runs. After posting 345 in the first innings, the hosts bundled New Zealand out for 296. Axar Patel bagged a five-wicket haul.