Throughout his cerebral and emotional 20-minute felicitation speech in Mumbai after his worldwide retirement in 2012, batting nice Rahul Dravid got here up with quite a few memorable traces. Nevertheless, this one, used to explain his relationship with Sourav Ganguly, stood out.
“Sourav. Ours was a fantastic partnership. As you’d agree, with captains and vice-captains, over a few years, the connection is a bit like husbands and wives. It has ups and downs.”
With out saying so much, Dravid mentioned every thing about what goes on between a captain and his deputy. Whereas it may be safely assumed that each have a typical objective of doing their finest to make a cricket crew win, bare ambition could make one do humorous issues.
The seventeenth century British writer and puritan preacher, Thomas Brooks, as soon as mentioned, “Ambition is a gilded distress, a secret poison, a hidden plague, the engineer of deceit, the mom of hypocrisy, the mother or father of envy and the unique of vices.”
With Virat Kohli again on the helm as Indian captain for the sequence in opposition to England, there was voluble chatter about whether or not deputy Ajinkya Rahane, who led India inspirationally in Australia in Kohli’s absence, is certainly a greater chief.
Kohli, the energy-oozing cricketer, whose charisma, awe-inspiring performances and saleability, has typically hogged the highlight vs the understated and calm Rahane, who embraced the percentages Down Beneath with out fuss and empowered others to carry out above their potential.
Beneath Rahane, senior gamers like Cheteshwar Pujara, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah and R Ashwin grew to become leaders and immediately the crew huddle noticed many gamers, who often stayed silent, discover a voice.
Kohli, away on paternity depart, would have seen that and he’s good to not imbibe a number of the traits that Rahane confirmed and convey to the bottom a extra accommodative model of himself.
The brand new dad could be comforted by the truth that Rahane doesn’t see himself as a full-time captain, at the very least as of now, not like the white-ball format the place issues should not that straight ahead with deputy Rohit Sharma eyeing the job. “Nothing modifications. Virat was and can at all times be the captain of the Take a look at crew and I’m his deputy. Virat and I’ve at all times shared bonding with one another,” Rahane mentioned final week.
However is it so easy? Would not ego get in the way in which. What occurs when stand-in captains make approach for normal captains in worldwide groups?
Former India skipper and chief selector, Dilip Vengsarkar, who made approach for present coach Ravi Shastri to grow to be captain within the well-known win in Chennai vs West Indies in 1988 the place Narendra Hirwani picked up 16 wickets on debut, and an ODI tourney in Sharjah later, earlier than coming again, instructed TOI, “It would not actually matter when regular service resumes. Captains and vice-captains often work collectively and even senior gamers, regardless of not being in management roles, stroll as much as the captain to supply strategies. Even within the dressing room, issues don’t change so much. Stand-in captains know they’re solely there for a restricted time. It’s a bit like a standard captain goes into the dressing room to take care of well being or harm considerations and the vice-captain takes over and immediately wickets fall. However he has to make approach when the common skipper comes again on to the sphere.”
Vengsarkar additionally recalled the time when Mohammad Azharuddin led the aspect with 5 former captains in it. “Neither he nor the previous captains had points,” he mentioned.
Bowling coach Bharat Arun, whereas talking to R Ashwin on the spinner’s YouTube channel, although provided an fascinating perception. “Rahane backs gamers and appears calm and even when a bowler goes mistaken, he may not be terrified of the captain. He is aware of that he will likely be backed. With Virat, in case you bowl two dangerous balls, it’d appear like he’ll get offended, however that is simply his power. Ajinkya brings the calmness.”
Previous to the Take a look at sequence, legendary opener Sunil Gavaskar instructed TOI that India had at all times performed effectively in Kohli’s absence. Whereas Rahane has proved that concept proper in some methods, Kohli’s captaincy document of 33 Take a look at wins and 14 sequence wins out of 20 speaks for itself.
His aggressive type could seem imposing. A few of his calls, like dropping Rahane in South Africa and Pujara in England, each in 2018, and the systematic and curious culling of each Rahane and Ashwin from the white-ball groups and the barbs at Pujara’s perceived lack of intent, defied logic and gave rise to theories that he needed to eradicate all potential rivals for captaincy.
However now having seen how others have blossomed below Rahane’s quiet type, will he change tack? Or will he get much more ruthless?