Friday, May 11, 2012

Losing Captain.... Losing Team

I was emotionally absorbed when I wrote Winning Captain…Losing Team, a year ago featuring Sourav Ganguly. Today, with a similar turmoil, I’m writing Losing Captain, Losing Team, featuring DADA. I don’t have to reiterate the points that Ganguly was the God of Offside, Charismatic Indian captain blah blah blah. We all know it.

But, what transpired him to become the Losing Captain?
Let us put the facts first. Sourav Ganguly quit International Cricket in late 2008. Since then his appearances were restricted to his state team Bengal and his IPL teams Knight Riders & Pune Warriors. And Sourav Ganguly represented Bengal only because he wished to be in better shape and touch while representing his IPL team. Lack of International cricket rigor or the age factor whatever you wish to associate it, Ganguly’s form has been deteriorating in IPL over the years and his sides played equally poor cricket.

Again, the logic of deteriorating form may hold merit to his contemporaries like Gilchrist, Warne, Hayden, Symmonds etc. Except Gilchrist everyone else moved on or left out from IPL as they were considered (themselves or by their franchises) not bringing any value additions to their sides. But, Ganguly situation can be better associated with Warne and Gilchirst as these two players commanded respect for the leadership skills. Warne quit on his own terms after 2011 with an IPL win to his credit (2008), while Gilchrist survival till date is largely due to his leadership than just a player. This is proven, after all, Gilchrist delivered by winning IPL in 2009 (after the mayhem in 2008), also got a weak Punjab team to finish good on the Points table during 2011 edition. Probably it is the main reason Gilchrist still figures in the scheme of things to be the part Punjab for IPL 2012. Even today, I’m certain Gilly must have recuperated his hamstring injury, but delaying his arrival in the XI only because he don’t want to disturb the combination/form of the current team.

Ganguly (read the interview) rather comparing his situation with Vettori and Sangakara would be better off comparing with Gilchrist. If Ganguly is still finding a place in a franchise, it is only because of his value addition as a leader more than just a player. Obviously there are better players than Sourav Ganguly, especially in this format of the game. So, if he fails to deliver as a skipper, there is absolutely no business for Ganguly in IPL. Though the circumstances, form etc point to exit door from here, none of it still answers how he transpired to a losing captain.

Before we further analyze into it, let us revisit the situations after Ganguly era as a leader. Honestly, after Ganguly left the scene as a captain of Indian cricket, the team was mostly in shambles. After 3 years (technically 2 years) of regime with Kolkata Knight Riders, the team was still nowhere. Adding salt to the wound, his team was mostly found on the losing side too. Thanks to the Auctions of 2011, the new Knight Riders unit has progressed leaps and bounds since then. It is now fag end of the tournament for Warriors, beyond doubt the side has not moved anywhere since inception is another pity story.

Technically, Ganguly as a leader succeeded once and failed thrice. If we introspect his success, there was a John Wright, soft natured persona, prefers to play it subtle, that worked well for the tough natured and a vocal DADA. The chemistry between the combo worked great and so benefitted Team India.

If we introspect his failures, there was a Chappell with a similar persona as Ganguly, but both had headed different directions, hence the fallout. Then, there was a Shah Rukh with similar personality, but different opinions, so the fallout was inevitable. With Subrato Roy, the similar story continues. With each of the fallout, his teams were the first affected and then his loyal fans who witnessing the legends plunge. The above points explain what transpired Ganguly a losing captain.

As individual, Ganguly might relish these challenges. But India is an emotional country. The fans are always ardent. Every disturbing journey the icon undergoes, it is an emotional drench for his fans. Time Ganguly put his fans first than himself before taking future decisions. After all we are tired of the fall again.

Bottom line: A sportsman’s success is determined by his legacy. Does, Ganguly have many?

Cricket Lover

1 comment:

  1. He quit indian team, india won the world cup, He quit KKR, they are doing well now... - who is the problem child??? :)


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