Rahul Dravid's talk-filled innings with scribes

Published: Sunday, April 25, 2004, 20:22 [IST]
Share this on your social network:
   Facebook Twitter Google+    Comments Mail

More images
New Delhi:Indian vice-captain Rahul Dravid has shown himself to be as balanced answering tickling questions from the media as he is taking stance to face fiery pacemen.

But unlike during his batting innings, when he lets go many deliveries with a sound judgement of where his stumps are, the stylish batsman takes each question head on.

Many journalists in New Delhi were bowled over by his articulate disposition during an interaction as Dravid spoke about team prospects, sponsorship deals and even his personal life.

"Commercialisation is a part and parcel of modern day sport. It may have its pros and cons but it is definitely here to stay," said Dravid when asked about the increasing commercialisation of the game.

Indian cricketers are often criticised for appearing in numerous advertisement spots, mostly when the team is not doing well, but Dravid said the criticism was uncalled for.

"Sportsmen don't spoil their schedule for shooting ads and it takes just one day to shoot an ad but is shown hundreds of times on television," said Dravid.

"The danger is only when one lets it nibble into your practice schedule. One should realize that money will only do good to the game and we as players know that we are in demand for commercials only if we perform."

Dravid, who has struck three double-centuries in Tests since his marriage last year, said the parents and families of sportspersons played an important role in their success.

"There is immense pressure on families and they have to sacrifice a lot. We get the accolades but they often face the negative side of it," said the 31-year-old, who first played for India in 1996.

Asked who the woman behind his success was, he named two.

"I guess my mother and my wife Vijeta will have to share the credit," said Dravid, who led India in the first two matches of a recent high-profile three-Test series in Pakistan.

Dravid justified the popularity of the game in this cricket-crazy nation of one billion saying it were not the cricketers but the fans and the media who made it such a big success.

"It all depends on market forces. The number of people watching cricket make it the most wanted sport in our country. Other sports need heroes to boost their popularity," he said.

Dravid, who plays for the Southern Indian state of Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy national championship and is based in the techno city of Bangalore, said balancing career and personal lives was always a challenge.

"Believe me, it is very tough. But as you go on, you learn to find the balance," said Dravid, who has scored 6,855 runs in 78 Tests, and 7,251 runs in 229 One-dayers.

He saw a bright future for Indian cricket.

"There are a number of promising players coming through. Players like Aakash Chopra, Mohammed Kaif and Yuvraj Singh have proved themselves and others like Hemang Badani and Rohan Gavaskar did not look out of place in the limited chances that they got.

"It is good for the game and keeps senior players like Sachin (Tendulkar), Sourav (Ganguly) and myself on our toes," said Dravid.

"The team will probably get better after we retire," he concluded.

Write Comments