Adelaide: A furious Sunil Gavaskar blasted Indian seamer Munaf Patel for his lethargic attitude on the field and suggested he is not fit for one-dayers.
Sunny, commentating for ESPN-Star in the ensuing tri-series, was visibally upset over Team India's lacklustre performance against Australia in the Adelaide one-dayer.
He unleashed a scathing criticism on Munaf over his sub-standard fielding.
Former India captain said Munaf as a bowler is OK but he can neither bat nor field.
"I do not have anything against him. He is a good bowler. But his attitude on the field is just not right."
"If he is among the three regular bowlers, it"s okay but Munaf does not deserve a place as the fourth bowler. Because he cannot bat, he is useless as a fielder and in one-day cricket you need to do well in at least two aspects," Gavaskar said.
In such a scenario, leg-spinner Piyush Chawla or all-rounder Praveen Kumar, who can bat a bit, would have been a better choice as the fourth bowler, Sunny said.
However, later captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni defended his decision to include Munaf, saying he needed a bowler "who does not think too much and bowls according to the field."
"Munaf is a bowler who bowls according to the field which was important. He does not think too much. But that is not the case with Sree who experiments a lot," Dhoni said.
He cut a sorry picture fielding at mid-wicket when Clarke pushed Harbhajan's delivery to the vacant short mid-wicket area and ran for three before the seamer could get to the ball. He conceded two extra runs where it should have been a not more than a single.
He could be blamed for squandering at least one run out chance as well. While bowling, Munaf was nowhere in the scene to receive the point fielder"s throw with James Hopes well short of his ground.
Munaf's match fitness is always questionable and day in day out he keeps on making stupid mistakes in the field. Although he bowls to a probing line he is ineffective for he lacks pace. And what happened to his pace. This is the guy who was drafted into national sqaud with hardly any first-class expierence but for the fact that he could touch 150ks consistantly.
He seems to think he is living in the pre-limited-over games era when fielding was not seen as important aspect of cricket. Teams like Australia, South Africa, New Zealand certainly would not entertain such species. Why can't India do it...