Ravi Shastri (left) and Sourav Ganguly © Getty Images
Ravi Shastri (left) and Sourav Ganguly © Getty Images

Ravi Shastri and Sourav Ganguly have been at loggerheads for some time now. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) may be leaving no stone unturned to tell the world that everything is alright, the fact that controversy — Shastri vs Ganguly in this case — features invariably in everything the cricketing body does is something which cannot be ignored. Firefighting countless issues, such as Lodha Committee recommendations, constant pressure from the Supreme Court and the facing the herculean task of cleaning its image in the public eye, BCCI is certainly having a tough time. And if these were not enough, the conflict that broke between Shastri and Ganguly and the transparency BCCI showed in the appointment of Anil Kumble as India’s head coach has posed further challenges.

To get things straight, Ganguly and Shastri are two of the most dominant personalities in Indian cricket. Both the men are blessed with majestic cricketing brains, and the one fact that is common between the two former captains is aggression. ALSO READ: Kumble: It is not about Shastri or me, but about India

It is not a surprise to see two of the most aggressive personalities in Indian cricket are at loggerheads. Shastri, who claims to have moved on from the rejection, is reeling in reality, and has made it clear that he is not happy with the way his application file was handled. Ganguly was not present when Shastri made his case in front of the panel, which the latter is absolutely right in pointing out by describing it as disrespecting the job entrusted. ALSO READ: Rohit Sharma upset over Ravi Shastri leaving Team India

In Ganguly’s favour, he has appeared on the national TV and claimed informing the BCCI and his mates of his unavailability during Shastri’s turn, way well in advance. And not surprisingly, Ganguly has given a fitting reply to Shastri on the question of the importance of being present. Shastri went on a vacation post his presentation, and Ganguly got the opportunity of covering the lost ground and strike back by saying more than him, Shastri was needed to be available.

In hindsight, this is nothing but an embarrassing and unwanted episode of two respected names in Indian cricket. The solution for men in disagreement lies in having conversation well enough to sort out the differences, but this does not seem to be happening at the moment.

So where does it end?

Maybe, it is time for BCCI to step in. It is time for BCCI to truly follow the path of transparency, and tell why Kumble was deemed the best candidate. The choice of Kumble as India’s coach is not questionable, but what makes him the right choice for the task will provide great insights into the thought and processes that went in. Kumble is said to have made the best presentation among them all, but it obviously also has a lot of backing by the fact that he played with 3 out of the 4 members of the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) that spearheaded the selection.

The understanding, trust, and camaraderie between Kumble, Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman has definitely been a massive factor in the appointment. Shastri never enjoyed that.

Still, no one has yet questioned that. For those to make baseless allegations — which are not hard to make — it is easy. But that’s irrelevant. All the drama that is taking place, which has surprisingly been joined by the likes of Sanjay Manjrekar, Bishan Singh Bedi and even Gautam Gambhir, can be put to an end if the BCCI makes public the reasons where and why Kumble won against the rest of the 56 candidates.

Both Shastri and Ganguly are justified in their individual capacities, but the controversy that is playing out on the national TV is totally uncalled for. Instead of welcoming Kumble — indeed the right choice — into the coaching job, the attention has unwantedly been on an issue which may have no life a few days from now.

(Devarchit Varma is senior writer with CricketCountry. He can be followed on Twitter @Devarchit)