It seems the feud between Ravi Shastri and Sourav Ganguly is still fresh in the minds of the two Indian captains. The two had berated each other in the public eye after Anil Kumble was chosen over Shastri to become the Indian team coach. Shastri now recently said that Ganguly, who is considered the man who veered India out of the pits of the match fixing scandal of the late 1990’s, figures nowhere in his list of most successful Indian captains.
Ravi Shastri made the comment while praising MS Dhoni, who recently gave up the limited overs captaincy. “My salaam to a dada captain,” he said, using the word that teammates used to address Sourav Ganguly during his reign as Indian captain. He went on to say that MS Dhoni was by far the greatest Indian captain of all time. He said that Dhoni’s timing of announcing the decision has given
“Virat (Kohli) time till the Champions Trophy to prepare for the title defence.”
“Again, the reason I say he has nothing to prove is that he is easily India’s most successful captain, by a distance. There is no one even close to him in that regard,” Shastri said, “The names that follow in that list a fair distance behind are Kapil Dev, who led India to the World Cup title in 1983 and because of whom we won the Test series in England in 1986. And Ajit (Wadekar) in an era before there was one-day cricket, when we won successive Test series in the West Indies and then England in 1971. And of course, Tiger (Pataudi) for flamboyance. Baaki koi nahi [there is no one else],” he added.
Shastri’s claims may contradict some of the statistics and also the general notion in the cricket fraternity where Ganguly is not considered too far behind MS Dhoni as the most successful Indian captain. While India’s performances overseas improved by leaps and bounds in his watch, Ganguly was also only the second man to lead India to the World Cup finals in 2003.
Shastri had earlier said that Ganguly was not present at the coach selection meeting when he was interviewed by the advisory committee and also indicated that Ganguly may have had a hand in Kumble becoming coach. Ganguly retorted by saying that Shastri is living in a “fool’s paradise” if he really thinks this was the case.
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