Rio De Janeiro, 14 July-2014, AP: Lionel Messi has received the award for best player…
Unlike the wild celebrations that current players display at the fall of a wicket, players of yesteryear were composed in expressing their happiness on the field.
Images of Kapil Dev raising his arms in exultation after dismissing a batsman or just a hugging wicketkeeper before taking the ball and shining it for the next delivery were how players of the past went about.
After accepting the CEAT International Lifetime Achievement Award here on Monday, legendary all-rounder Dev, quoting Bishen Singh Bedi, said, “They don’t believe they can take wickets. I don’t understand why they jump around when they take wickets. You are a bowler, just go and do your job.”
The 1983 World Cup-winning captain added: “When I see such reactions, I wish I could do that but I never could do that.”
On who should coach the Indian team, Kapil did not take any names. Even as names like Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid are doing rounds, Kapil said: “The best person should get it. It is not important whether he is an Indian or a foreigner. If a foreigner can do a better job, then why not?”
Kapil, who was briefly coach of the Indian team in 1999-2000, said, “the comfort level” that the coach has with the players is important.
“Cricket is much more open now than what used to be. I am not saying someone from Australia or England cannot do the job. Indian players are very talented but not matured. In our culture, a 50-year-old still looks up to his father. If the manager (read coach) does not give you the comfort factor, your performances will be affected.”
Present among the audience were Ajinkya Rahane, who won the CEAT Indian Cricketer of the Year award and Deepak Hooda, the Young Player of the Year award.
Rahane has been consistent for India in Tests in England and Australia with a century each on both the trips. He said, “Spending four months in Australia gave me confidence to play well in IPL.” He rated his 103 at Lord’s last year high.
“Scoring runs in both England and Australia is special. But winning is very important. Scoring a century at Lord’s and winning the Test will remain very special to me,” said Rahane.
Rohit Sharma, the victorious Mumbai Indians captain, was honoured for his 264 in an ODI against Sri Lanka last November with the Special Award. Speaking on the IPL success, Sharma said: “Am certainly enjoying captaincy. It is a challenge to lead any team, not just in IPL. Ricky Ponting (head coach) and the support staff laid out a plan on how to go about. It is important to hold the team together and have a positive approach throughout the tournament,” said Sharma.
Perhaps what was said in good humour by former Australian batsman and master of ceremonies for the evening, Dean Jones, left R Vinay Kumar, Ranji Trophy-winning Karnataka captain embarrassed. After Vinay received the Domestic Player of the Year award, Jones asked Vinay if he sent a crate of wine to the chairman of selectors, Sandeep Patil. Not knowing what to say, Jones quickly added, leaving the hall in splits: “You have to suck up to the chairman of selectors. I used to do that to the chairman of selectors to get into the Australian side.”
THE CEAT CRICKET RATING AWARD WINNERS FOR 2014-15:
International Cricketer of the Year: Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka)
Indian Cricketer of the Year: Ajinkya Rahane
International Batsman of the Year: Hashim Amla (South Africa)
International Bowler of the Year: Rangana Herath (Sri Lanka)
T20 Player of the Year: Dwayne Bravo (West Indies and Chennai Super Kings)
Popular Choice Award: Kieron Pollard (West Indies and Mumbai Indians)
Special Award: Rohit Sharma (India)
Domestic Cricketer of the Year: R Vinay Kumar (Karnataka)
Young Player of the Year: Deepak Hooda (Baroda and Rajasthan Royals)
International Lifetime Achievement Award: Kapil Dev