It’s been roughly 16 months since Rahul Dravid has been charge of the Indian team, and judging by how things have panned out, it’s safe to say that he’s done a fine job. Barring the Asia Cup and the T20 World Cup blip, Dravid has ticked most boxes as India’s head coach. His backing of players is next to none. Guys like Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant have been given a long rope and going by the warm and wonderful things players have to say about Dravid, The Wall has struck a wonderful camaraderie with everyone in the team.
Dravid has never backed down from praising a player to the hilt, with one such incident narrated by Dinesh Karthik. In a batter-oriented game, Dravid has ensured that the bowlers get their dues as well. Karthik revealed that during one of the team meetings, Dravid went on a roll praising Bhuvneshwar Kumar for his contribution to Indian cricket. The 33-year-old, who is still pretty much part of India’s white-ball plans has produced a string of good performance since his return from injury and DK revealed how Dravid was appreciative of Bhuvneshwar’s efforts after one of India’s recent victories.
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“At the start of a team meeting, Rahul Dravid literally spoke about him for five minutes. Just saying that he goes very unassumed, very quiet and I think it is very important to give the devil its due in a team meeting. He spoke about Bhuvneshwar Kumar and how he’s been profound in Indian cricket for the last so many years in white-ball cricket,” Karthik said on the show ‘The Rise of New India’ on Cricbuzz Plus.
Everyone knows about Bhuvneshwar’s fairytale beginning for India, when coming off a domestic match where he dismissed Sachin Tendulkar, Bhuvi rattled Pakistan with a three-wicket burst on his T20I debut. Bhuvneshwar brought back the term banana swing with his wickets of Nasser Jamshed, Ahmed Shehzad and Umar Akmal. He soon became an all-format bowler for India but constant injury breakdowns limited his Test ambitions and made him concentrate more on white-ball formats. 11 years later, Bhuvneshwar, when fit, is still hard to ignore and that is exactly why Dravid did not back down from such a wonderful gesture for India’s champion, reckons DK.
“That was very good to hear because a lot of times we are always fascinated with batsmanship – people obviously hitting fours and sixes – but here is one guy who has consistently performed with the ball and been a prolific performer for Team India, apart from his franchise. A lot of credit must be given to Bhuvneshwar Kumar,” Karthik added.