I hate to say this, but Indian cricket will go through painfully turbulent times in 2013. The powers-that-be should have cracked the whip after the back-to-back humiliations in England and Australia, but they didn’t. An English journalist even asked me how MS Dhoni “kept his job after all this”. Well, if the BCCI president can defend the team, saying “the same bunch of players won us the World Cup in 2011”, then anything is possible. Talk of confusing formats, and notions.
India are not the only team to have lost stalwarts to retirements, but the fans and media have chosen to miss the point. Not too long ago, Australia bid goodbye to more than half-a-dozen legends. And look how well they have rebuilt the fort.
Do we have ready replacements for Sehwag, Gambhir, Tendulkar, Dhoni (the skipper, that is) and Zaheer? The answer is both yes and no. We have the personnel, but they are not ready. Which obviously brings us to the question — WHY?
Planning is one word missing from Indian cricket’s lexicon. Also, whether you like it or not, the IPL has done more harm than good to the state of the game in the country. T20 will help you produce Bislas and Gonys, not Tendulkars and Zaheers.
So be prepared to see Indian cricket hit new lows this year. We’ve lost to England, looked anything but convincing thus far against Pakistan, and I wonder how we will fare against Australia. We are also scheduled to tour South Africa. But don’t worry, the IPL will help us forget our sorrows.