By Kushan Sarkar
New Delhi: Jan 28, 2012
Livid with "hindsight critics" who are calling for Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman's head after India's 0-4 Test hammering in Australia, former skipper Bishan Singh Bedi on Saturday said the "once-in-a-generation players" deserved to be respected.
"Please show some respect to the players who have served the country for so long. They have represented the country on merit and not on recommendation. Dravid and Laxman are not the products of our cricket system but rare talents that emerged despite the system. They don't need our suggestions as to when they should retire," Bedi told PTI in an interview.
Laxman and Dravid, and to some extent even the iconic Sachin Tendulkar, are under scrutiny after failing to notch up even a single hundred in the series that concluded on Saturday in Adelaide.
Bedi feels that the difference between India and Australia has been "greater commitment and better preparation" by the hosts.
"The Australian team had done their homework and were well prepared for the series. The Indian team, on the other hand, lacked the level of commitment required to perform well in such a series. The Indians were no match for Australia," Bedi said.
Asked about Mahendra Singh Dhoni's captaincy which many termed as passive, Bedi said, "I was never ever enamoured by Dhoni's cricket thinking. But then India is filled with 'hindsight critics'. Ten months back, Dhoni could do no wrong and now he can't get any decision right. It's just that decisions taken by team management didn't click."
For Bedi, in a cricket crazy country like India, getting a replacement won't be a problem but the void that will be left by the senior players would be difficult to fill.
"In India, there would be players who would take their places eventually. But we would probably never be able to find replacements for these once-in-a-generation players.
"That's why I get furious when people who don't have the qualification to tie their (Laxman, Dravid) shoelaces start dissecting their performance," Bedi said.