Kumble is the Right Choice
Ian Chappell says in his column at Cricinfo:
Imran Khan was one of the better international leaders and he believes a good captain should “understand bowling”. Tendulkar definitely comprehends bowling when he’s facing it, but from his actions as a captain he doesn’t appear to understand bowlers.
The Indian selectors wouldn’t have done Tendulkar any favours by appointing him Test captain a third time. His first assignment would have been in the toughest environment: Australia have lost just six Tests at home since the start of the 1995-96 season. In addition, during his first two stints as Indian captain he was at his peak as a player. Now he’s no longer a dominant batsman.
While I am a bit skeptical about the last statement, I agree with the rest. Tendulkar has lead India twice and failed both the times. Isn’t this enough proof for the selectors that he is not captaincy material? Thankfully, common sense has prevailed and Anil Kumble, who in my opinion is the right man for the post, has been chosen. Further, with the Aussie tour coming up, it’s important that Tendulkar is under no extra pressure. This is his last tour down under and let’s hope he makes it as memorable as his previous three tours.
And, I also disagree with Navjot Singh Sidhu when he says:
“Are they not playing with the interest of the country,” Sidhu, a former India batsman and now a commentator, asked. “When you appoint Kumble as captain of the team, it is nothing but a retrograde step. He is a stop-gap arrangement.”
That’s total rubbish, but coming from Sidhu, I am not too surprised. He was OK with Saurav being given the captaincy of India when Dravid stepped down. Age did not mater then, but now all of a sudden, it does! I am sure he would not have said anything like this had Sachin accepted the offer.
That said, I hope Kumble is able to handle the aggressive young guns like Sreesanth properly. That will be his biggest challenge in the Aussie tour.