Trevor Chappell Interview: Part Two
Q: Your brother, Greg Chappell came to India with great fanfare, had success at start of his coaching stint but somewhere it went wrong. What do you attribute it to. The team didn"t do that bad. What do you think, where did he go wrong?
Trevor: Knowing little about Greg"s sort of thinking on cricket…he was involved with the Australian selection when Katich was gone and there were few changes made which were not popular. But everything worked out alright. Same sort of thing had happened with Indian situation. Greg"s thinking is basically it"s young person"s game and you have to be looking ahead. That sort of Australian idea where you are not picking the team for today"s series, you are sort of looking for few series ahead where you want the team to be then. It obviously means end of careers for few that is not going to be all that popular with players. Then there is going to be conflict between selectors, coaches and players.
Q: Do you think Twenty20s have affected Tests?
Trevor: I think they have. It is hard to say exactly how much. The way the players play any cricket now is different with T20 than it was before T20. There are not many players that are prepared to bat and bat and bat and let lot of balls go. Nobody lets the balls go anymore. Obviously you can"t do that in T20, you can"t let too many balls go past. You have to try and score off every ball. The other thing with modern batsmen is whether the ball is seaming, swinging or spinning, footwork is not prevalent that I have noticed. You look at ponting, Tendulkar or Lara there footwork forward and back is quite big. Lot of the more recent playerse it is standing and hitting through the ball.TWenty, 30, 40, 50 years ago, first morning of a Test, the wickets would help bowlers and the job of the opening batsmen, the Boycotts, Lawrys, Gavaskars and these guys was to let as many balls go as you can and only play at absolutely you have to. That is kind of missing in the modern cricketers.
Q: Greg Chappell said you have to score runs off every ball. Take risk to score runs. What"s your take?
Trevor: You do (have to take risk). But if you have got a situation like, first two hours of a Test match traditionally helps bowlers. Then the main objective is to keep wickets intact. Once the wicket is a bit flatter then you are looking at every opportunity to score. And if you are looking to score too much in the first two hours you might lose three or four wickets and you might get few runs. You are better of being one down for not many. In a T20 match you got no choice, you have to go for runs. In a T20 the wicket is pretty much the same for both teams. In a Test, it"s going to change late in the first afternoon or the second day, it"s going to be flattened out for the second team more than it would in a T20. You got to balance. You do have to be looking to score one run off every ball but if in some situations if the wickets is giving too much help to the bowlers you are better of keeping wickets intact and then try and make up for scoring you missed out on. I am sure Greg would agree on this.
Q: West Indies and Australia dominated the game for longer periods of time. But now no such domination is seen by any one team in recent times. Do you think one team calling the shots for long has gone or is it just a phase?
Trevor: Yes it could be just a phase. I don"t think it is good that one team dominates for 15 years. It is better like it is now. It would be better if the standard was a little bit higher than it is. Australia were dominating and they have come right back. It is not that other teams have come up. If all teams were a bit better I think the game would be better in that perspective. It is only really in England and Australia that you get crowds for Test matches and not in other countries. May be crowds would come here (India) when Australia or England is playing. With certain teams they"ll come and watch but others they won"t. I think having three different formats, with lots of cricket on you can pick and choose which you come to. Not many people are going to five days and see the whole game. But a 50-over or 20-over you can some on one day and see the whole game. Unless you really like Test cricket you won"t go for five days. In the modern era, also in Australia, probably no different here, everybody want things instantly, they don"t want to wait for five days. I prefer to watch a good Test match over five days. It is a greater test of bowlers or batsmen"s skills. Bowling-wise in T20, if you get wickets it is because somebody has had a big swing and got bowled or got out at boundary. It is not like three guys are caught in slips. You have got somebody out but it"s more from their mistake than anything you have done as a bowler.
Q: What are your views on DRS (Decision Review System). Is more technology needed for the game?
Trevor: I am not a huge fan of technology. Some of it is good, for runouts, for stumpings or no-balls. I would rather see the referral in the hands of the umpires than the players though. If the umpire wants some confirmation of did it hit the gloves, bat-pad catches, that sort of things I would rather see the on-field ask the third umpire. I think hotspot is not too bad. I am not big fan of hawkeye. The umpires are experienced enough. There are good ones and bad one. Generally the umpires don"t make too many mistakes. I would prefer to see review in umpire"s hands than the players. I would have the umpire"s mistake than the technology"s. It can"t be 100 percent.
Q: Your infamous underarm ball against New Zealand in 1981? Have you ever been able to forget that incident?
Trevor: I am trying to forget but people keep reminding me. I would have gladly forgotten it a long time ago but it keeps coming up. I don"t get too upset. At some stage, I can"t remember when it was, I decided it is no good getting upset if it was keep coming up. The only person who will be affected is only me. It was within the laws but not in the spirit of the game. It is hard to say and if it was still in the laws and the captain asked me to do it again, probably now I will talk him out of it. I would say, "I can bowl a good enough over arm delivery that I won"t get hit for a six." It was within the laws, from that point of view it was alright. It would have been better if it had not happened. Then, I wouldn"t have been remembered for anything. I did discuss with Greg only once and Ian and I may be two or three times. Ian was not in favour of it. He thought we were all mad.