Former Indian batsman Mohammad Kaif has slammed Virat Kohli for not backing the players. Mohammad Kaif cited the example of Sourav Ganguly to point out how the former India skipper used to back his players to the hilt. The former batsman made his comment over Shreyas Iyer not being included in the playing eleven for the first T20I against Australia.
Speaking on Sony Sports, Mohammad Kaif questioned the exclusion of the Delhi Capitals skipper. Kaif, who is also the assistant coach of Delhi Capitals, highlighted that Iyer has proved his credentials as a No. 4 batsman both in the IPL and in the series against New Zealand earlier this year.
Kaif was critical of the current team culture as he said that the current team-management does not back the players. Iyer was dropped from the playing eleven after failing to deliver in the ODI series where his scores in the three games were – 2, 38 and 19.
“Shreyas Iyer had become your main player at one point. That he is your No.4 batsman, who finishes the game. Whether you talk about the IPL or go back to the New Zealand series, there also he finished games at No.4. He scored 50 not out or 33 not out, he was playing well at the No.4 position,” said Mohammad Kaif.
“He had two or three bad innings in the ODI, so they didn’t play him in the first T20I. This is the culture of the Indian team and we have all understood that. I am not surprised that he is dropped,” he added.
He further hit out at head coach Ravi Shastri too as he said that the players are now aware of the fact that they won’t get much time in the team to prove themselves. He then recalled how things were different when he was playing for India under Sourav Ganguly’s captaincy.
“This is the sort of thinking of Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri and the players are also understanding that. The players also know that they will get just two innings, this is the sort of team it is,” said Mohammad Kaif.
“When we used to play with Dada, it was not like this. In Dada’s time you knew that if he has picked one player, he will play him till the time he feels he will deliver. He backed the players a lot.
“That is why Virat Kohli will have to think in the coming time to leave his legacy as a captain. Why we talk about Dada or why does Virender Sehwag talk about Dada? Because Dada has made that impact. Sourav Ganguly has backed us, he made a team.”
“So, when Virat Kohli leaves after 8-10 years, there should be players who take Virat Kohli’s name that because of him they started playing international cricket and became such big players,” he added.