Indian cricketers’ popularity knows no bounds, as they are followed by cameras and fans wherever they go.
That is not the case in New Zealand, as Ross Taylor saw firsthand the life of an Indian cricketer during the IPL 2011.
Taylor spent the first three seasons of his career with Royal Challengers Bangalore before joining Rajasthan Royals (RR) for one season.
During his tenure, he had the opportunity to play with India legend Rahul Dravid. Even a decade after quitting from international cricket, Dravid remains one of India’s most beloved figures.
He was an active player in 2011, and his performance was constantly monitored.
We Did Apologise To Rahul Dravid: Ross Taylor
The former New Zealand skipper said in his book Ross Taylor: Black & White that his coffee date with Dravid went wrong because crowds encircled them in a mall. According to the former cricketer, security had to extract them, and after that, he only drank coffee with Dravid at the hotel.
“The South African off-spinner Johan Botha and I were sitting next to Rahul Dravid at breakfast in Jaipur. We asked him if he wanted to go for a coffee; he didn’t really, but we twisted his arm.
“We got a cab to a five-storeyed mall. We hadn’t taken any security with us, which was naive. Within two minutes the mall was packed – there were at least 4000 people – and we had to get mall security to extract us,” Taylor has written.
“I’m sure Rahul saw it coming, but he was too polite to turn us down. “Botes” and I were profusely apologetic on the way back to the hotel.
“Rahul played it down with his usual class, saying we probably would’ve been okay in a bigger city like Mumbai but, in the smaller cities, they didn’t see big-name cricketers that often. Jaipur’s population is around four million. After that, coffee with Dravid was always in the hotel.”
Taylor retired from all forms of cricket earlier this year.