Gambhir should not feel left out after Kohli's appointment as vice-captain: Dravid

Rahul Dravid says he is looking forward to lead Rajasthan Royals in the fifth edition of Indian Premier League AFP

Mumbai: Mar 5, 2012

Former India captain Rahul Dravid on Tuesday asked Gautam Gambhir not to feel left out of the squad as his Delhi mate Virat Kohli is appointed as Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s deputy for the Asia Cup.

Although Dravid felt that Kohli had been rewarded for his splendid display in Australia, he said that the former India under-19 captain still had some way to go to establish himself and go a step further.

“He (Kohli) has had a great tour of Australia. He has done incredibly well in Tests and in the ODIs….the selectors have given him a bit of reward,” said Dravid.

“Having said that, Virat is the first to recognise that he has got to establish himself to go another step further. I think we know from the past that by just being the vice-captain you are not going to be the next captain.

“It’s a good recognition for his form, I feel people like Gautam shouldn’t feel left out from the team. But at the moment Dhoni is doing a good job, so you don’t need to look anywhere else,” Dravid further added at a function to unveil Rajasthan Royals’ team jersey ahead of the IPL V.

Dravid, who will lead the Royals in the upcoming edition of the IPL, felt that having shared the dressing room recently with Sachin Tendulkar (in the Test rubber in Australia), he can vouch that the champion batsman was not solely focused on getting his 100th international ton.

“Having shared the dressing room with Sachin, I don’t think Sachin himself is thinking about it (scoring the 100th century]. Every time a batsman wants to go out and score a century to help the team to win. It (the 100th ton) will happen,” said Dravid after the Royals announced Ultratech Cement as the team’s main sponsor for IPL 5.

“There will be a bit of controversy and you expect that in a professional sport and you know that each and every performance of yours is watched and analysed…you accept that and it’s a part and parcel of being a sportsman. When you do well it pays and gives you a lot of love and affection, and sometimes there is a flip-side as well.”

The 39-year-old Bangalore stalwart was responding to a query about the criticism in the Australian media about the seniors’ performance and Tendulkar’s long-awaited landmark. (PTI)