This post was due for a long long time. Actually should have published when Dravid announced his retirement. Oh before I forget, I am going to jibber jabber about him in this post (those who feel strongly about sachin and bharat ratna in the same sentence can stop reading now). But I was caught up with my ‘saving the world’ work that I do on a daily basis which involves attending calls, writing mails and other important stuff I am damn sure you CANT do on a daily basis.
But last night when I saw Dravid on TV screen, it struck me that this could be the last time he is seen on cricket field taking fairplay award because no one is actually sure of he will return for the sixth season, which I hope, he doesn’t. Because asking dravid to play in T20-20 is like eating carbide induced mango. It just doesn’t fit and you end up hating it.
Basically there are two types of cricket viewers in India, a) those who like dravid and b) those who are stupid. I don’t consider myself a big cricket buff, heck I cant even sit through a 50 over match. But there are something’s I just love about the game, dravid being one of them. He represents probably the last generation of gentleman cricketers; the one’s who walk away if they think they have nicked the ball even before waiting for umpire to raise his finger.
So the image on tv was not pleasant. Will miss seeing him on field but I am glad he hung up his shoes at the right moment. The slow motion videos of him getting bowled on Australia tour were very painful. I was not angry because he was unable to score, I was disappointed because he got bowled. Mind you we are talking a batsmen who made the whole Australian bowling attack consisting of likes of McGrath, Gillespie and Warne slog for the whole day in Kolkata without giving away anything. They had to resort to negative bowling (they positioned most of the players on off side and started bowling on off stump) to stop him.
Every cricket critic you read agrees unanimously on the fact that dravid style of batting is the closest it comes to ‘textbook in action’, so I am not going in the details of technique. And since I have not seen Richards, gavaskar or border play, dravid is the man for me. The good guy, team man, perfectionist.
Maybe, just maybe 20 years from now, while watching some match I will get to mouth the dialogue ‘you know in our times when dravid used to take field……..’ to my children.