'Dravid a legend but as coach he is zero. Jab upar wala akal baant raha tha...': Ex-Pakistan cricketer's scathing attack
The former Pakistan batter targetted Rahul Dravid and the Indian team amid their performance against Australia in the WTC final.
India's grip in the World Test Championship final is slipping. Australia have already managed to take a lead of 296 runs and with six wickets in hand and two entire days to go, Team India will already have to pull off one of the highest successful chases at The Oval. Plenty of things went wrong for India, staring with the decision to leave out Ravichandran Ashwin, and after conceding a first-innings total of 469, once their top-order was shredded at 71/4, it was pretty much over. Take nothing away from the tremendous fightback shown by Ajinkya Rahane and Shardul Thakur, but despite the twin half-centuries, India were forced to play catch-up. There is still a glimmer of hope, but chasing anything over 300 in the fourth innings of a Test against a quality bowling attack like Australia's will certainly take some getting.
Amid all that is transpiring for India at The Oval, former Pakistan batter Basit Ali has launched a scathing attack on the team, calling the match a foregone conclusion at the toss itself when captain Rohit Sharma opted to bowl in overcast conditions. India had their foot halfway into the door by restricting Australia to 76/3, but counter-attacking centuries from Travis Head and Steve Smith slammed the door shut. Basit, who played 19 Tests and 50 ODIs for Pakistan, feels that the only way India can save the WTC final is through a miracle.
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"India lost the match the moment they chose to bowl worrying about the first two hours. And the kind of bowling that was on display was just like IPL. By lunch, the Indian bowlers appeared so happy as if they'd won the match. All India can do now is hope to get them out cheaply and hope for a miracle in the fourth innings. During the 120 overs that India fielded, I could see only 2-3 players being fit - Rahane, Kohli and Jadeja. The rest looked tired," the former batter said on his YouTube channel.
'Dravid is zero as a coach'
If criticising the players wasn't severe enough, Ali targetted coach Rahul Dravid through some shocking statements to say the least. A huge admirer of The Wall, Ali questioned the team management's tactics and added that while he is a huge fan of the former India captain, he is not impressed with Dravid the coaching, irrespective of what all he has achieved during his stints with India A and the senior men's team.
"I am a huge Rahul Dravid fan, have always been and will remain. He is a class player, a legend. But as a coach, he is absolutely zero. You prepared turning pitches on India. Just answer me this. When India travelled to Australia, were there similar wickets? They had bouncy pitches, right? God knows what he was thinking. Jab upar wala akal baant raha tha toh pata nahi kaha pahaado ke peeche chhupe huye thhe (God knows where he was when god was distributing brains)," said Ali.