Chappell best bet for Team India: Bala

Published: Sunday, June 12, 2005, 18:23 [IST]
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Chappell best bet for Team India: Bala

Bangalore:Great players don't necessarily make great coaches. Illustrious names like Sir Vivian Richards and Kapil Dev had failed to live up to their big reputation in their roles as coach of the national sides.

Fair to say they were abject failures!

Even as Aussie legend Greg Chappell braces up to take over the reins of Team India on June 15, the debate of whether cricketing greats can equally be successful as coach refuses to die down.

But veteran cricket writer Rajan Bala, feels Greg Chappell is the best man for the job.

"Look, there is no written law that greats cannot be successful coaches just because stalwarts like Kapil and Richards failed," he says in his own inimitable style.

"Greg has been an outstanding cricketer for Australia and I'm sure he would do a good job here."

There is constant talk that the Indian team is packed with stars and handling them won't be easy. Bala, however begs to differ.

"You talk of Greg not finding it easy with the star-spangled team. Wasn't he a great himself?," he asked.

Chappell best bet for Team India: Bala

He segues: "Being a star himself, the Indian stars are no match for him. Why I rate him so highly because he scored runs against the most feared West Indies pace battery of Marshall, Holding, Garner, Roberts whereas the likes of Tendulkar, Dravid, Ganguly and others had got runs against less menacing attacks."

Bala, who had been following the game since the fifties, is clear about thing: everything should be judged on basis of the type of bowling attacks that existed in different eras.

"If you have a look at contemporary quicks, apart from Shoaib Akhtar and Brett Lee, there is hardly anyone who can make life miserable for batsmen like the West Indians bowlers in the seventies and eighties."

The seasoned writer, who has written several books including the very recent-'The Covers are off' struck a discordant note when the talk veered towards skipper Sourav Ganguly.

"If you want my opinion, I would say Sourav Ganguly should not be in the side. He does not merit a place in the side," he said.

Indian skipper hit himself into form in the County championship with a sizzling 142 against Kent on Friday, but Bala choose to belittle Dada's effort.

"Kent attack isn't venomous to really test whether Ganguly had come out of the trough, so..." Bala remarked.

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