Sunil Gavaskar, Nasser Hussain indulge in heated debate before start of India-England 3rd Test
- Twitter was abuzz after Gavaskar and Hussain’s banter on Sony Sports Network before the toss of the India-England third Test at Headingley in Leeds on Wednesday.
At a time when the discussions about the verbal altercations between India and England cricketers at Lord’s are still fresh, the third Test got off to an even spicier start with former India captain Sunil Gavaskar and former England skipper Nasser Hussain indulging in a debate in the pre-match show.
Twitter was abuzz after Gavaskar and Hussain’s banter on Sony Sports Network before the toss of the India-England third Test at Headingley in Leeds on Wednesday.
Referring to a sentence in Hussain’s article in the Daily Mail about this current Virat Kohli-led Indian side not being bullied like the previous generation were, Gavaskar asked Hussain to elaborate which generation of Indian cricketers was he talking about.
“You said this India will not be bullied as perhaps the previous generations would be. (I) Belonging to previous generation, could you perhaps enlighten which generation? And what is the exact meaning of bully?” Gavaskar asked Hussain.
“I just think, the Indian side under the aggression of the past, would have said ‘no no no’. But what Kohli has done is to make them go doubly hard. I saw a little bit of that in Sourav Ganguly’s side and he started that, Virat is continuing with it. Even when Virat was not there, Ajinkya really went hard at the Australians. I just don’t think you want to wake this Indian side up,” Hussain replied.
Gavaskar then cited the records of the India side - which he was a part of - in England.
“But when you say previous generations were bullied, I don’t think so. I’d be very upset if my generation was being talked about as being bullied. If you have a look at the record, in 1971 we won, that was my first tour in England. 1974, we had internal problems so we lost 3-0. 1979, we lost 1-0, it could have been 1-1 if we chased down 438 at the Oval. 1982 we again lost 1-0. In 1986 we won 2-0, we could have won it 3-0. So, I don’t think my generation we were bullied. I don’t think aggression means you have always got to be at the face of the opposition. You can show passion, you can show your commitment towards your team without yelling after each fall of wicket,” Gavaskar said.
“I for one, quite like the way Kohli leads this side. That’s what I wanted to say. That team talk in which he said ‘let’s unleash fire on this English side’ and you could see the fire that they unleashed,” Hussain said, still dodging Gavaskar’s question.
“There is no argument in that. The question is saying that the previous generations were bullied. I don’t think this is right,” Gavaskar added.
The banter between Gavaskar and Hussain came to an end when presenter Harsha Bhogle said Hussain will have to leave a bit early for the toss.
Meanwhile, India captain Virat Kohli won the toss and opted to bat first. India decided to go in with an unchanged side.
England made two changes to their squad as they seek to level the series.
Dawid Malan replaces out-of-form Dom Sibley, while Craig Overton was picked ahead of the uncapped Saqib Mahmood to replace injured seamer Mark Wood.