Gautam Gambhir © Getty Images (File Picture)
Gautam Gambhir © Getty Images (File Picture)

Former India opener Gautam Gambhir has expressed his disappointment with the current team’s lack of preparation ahead of an important tour of England. In a conversation with The Quint, Gambhir also expressed his bemusement with the strange combinations that the team management has put forth for an important Test series like this one.

“More than the results, the preparation has not been the greatest. Red ball and white ball cricket are entirely different. You’ve got to play practice games where bowlers and batsmen get decent practice opportunities,” he said.

“India needs to decide whether Pandya’s a bowling or batting all-rounder. Test cricket is played with genuine all-rounders and not bits and pieces cricketers; look at Ben Stokes – he can win you a match on his own,” the former opener contended on the lack of a skilled display by Hardik Pandya and the need to have a genuine bowling all-rounder in the team.

“In the last game, we could have won with an effective third seamer. We had England at 131/5/. We could have them on the mat considering we had put them in a precarious situation,” Gambhir reckoned.

“Performances can keep you in the dressing room. Reputations don’t matter. However, if you pick someone you gotta give him a longer rope. If you pick someone, give him some opportunities,” Gambhir said about his Delhi team-mate Shikhar Dhawan being dropped frequently from the opening slot.

On the current state of test cricket, Gambhir expressed hope. “Results are good for Test cricket and that is what we are witnessing these days. There are fewer draws and that is in the interest of the game.”

“I hope India bounces back. There could be three results waiting in the wings. Hopefully, the batters can complement the bowlers,” he signed off expressing hope about a revival in the fortunes of India going forward.