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Kids shouldn't 'sell themselves short' with T20 - Dravid

Sidharth Monga

July 4, 2012

Comments: 97 | Text size: A | A

Young cricketers today have the option to become rich, successful cricketers without even aspiring to play Tests, but Rahul Dravid has urged them to "not sell themselves short" because he feels there is no match for the satisfaction that can be derived from playing Test cricket. He was quick to add that he didn't want to judge them on or blame them for their choices but that he wanted to challenge them to give Test cricket a fair go.

Dravid was speaking at the launch of the book Timeless Steel, an anthology of some of the best writings on him, published by ESPNcricinfo and Walt Disney. The book is a collection of 30 pieces, some new and some previously published; the writers include cricketers (Ed Smith, Jason Gillespie, Greg Chappell, Sanjay Manjrekar) and well-known cricket writers (Rohit Brijnath, Gideon Haigh, Rahul Bhattacharya, Suresh Menon).

"There are more options now," Dravid said of the quandary cricket faces. "Very hard for me to be judgemental about kids of today. Unfair. I had gone through a commerce degree in college, and not very successfully. When I grew up, if I wanted to be a successful professional cricketer - and making a living out of the sport became a part of that - the only option for me was to be a successful Test cricketer. There was no other way in which you could make a professional living out of the sport. I would have still played it, but I would have probably looked to do something else professionally if I wasn't good enough."

Dravid said he could understand the lure of the other options. "People now have the option of not necessarily playing Test cricket but making a living out of the game," he said. "And, you know, who's to blame kids for taking that option? Who's to blame kids for using that opportunity if they feel they are not good enough for Test cricket? If they are not good enough for Test cricket, I am sure they will feel, 'Look at least I needn't make a living out of this game. Let me at least play this, which is giving me money.'

"I won't like to judge them on that, but I will like to challenge them. What I'll like to tell young kids is that the greatest satisfaction you are going to get is by playing Test cricket and playing in some of these great stadiums of the world. That will give you the greatest personal satisfaction, so don't sell yourself short. Try and achieve. It is possible. It can be done. There might be kids in this era who will take that soft option. Some won't. We will be able to see in time. Every era there have been people who have fallen by the wayside."

When asked if he saw enough players coming in who were desperate to play Test cricket, Dravid said it was not a concern right now but one that will confront cricket soon enough. "People like Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Manoj Tiwary, or whoever the youngsters are, have grown up watching and idolising Test cricket," he said. "It's the kids like Samit [Dravid's son, 7] who will have grown up watching the IPL. That will be the challenge. What will those kids want? I don't see this as an immediate problem. I see it as a long-term issue.

"By long term I mean ten years, when those kind of kids grow up, what will their aspirations be? If one of the young kinds wants to play, will he want to play for a franchise? You have to understand that at the end of the day players are also performers, and they want to perform. When you look at the IPL, it's a great stage to perform. Played in front of full stadiums, there is a great viewership on television, you are playing with some of the best players in the world, you are playing at some of the greatest stadiums in the country… It's a great stage to perform. That challenge is going to arise in ten years' time, and I think we have got to address it right now."

India readers can buy the book here, at a special price

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by sportofpain on (July 7, 2012, 15:28 GMT)

@Ranjit Gulvady: So test cricket played in India does not matter huh? Only test cricket played abroad because that is the true test? Are you for real? Which team tours well - perhaps just SA who usually hold their own in the sub continent. When teams come to India they must learn to win on vicious turners - it's called home court advantage. When India goes to Australia they get to play in Perth or Brisbane with hardly any warm up - why? To pommel them on a hard bouncy track that they are not used to.

As for Dravid's comment re Test Cricket, it really is an anachronism. Who has the time to watch 5 days of Cricket played during the day time - nobody which is why stadia are empty. Cricket is a great sport - the skill of the batsmen, bowlers and fielders will remain and be enhanced. But formats will change. You cannot keep Test cricket alive when it has no appeal among the fans - the aficianados maybe but they are few and far between.

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist on (July 7, 2012, 11:42 GMT)

You can see the love that Dravid has for cricket. When you love something so dearly, you try to accomodate. Dravid, instead of wishing for the death of t20, is asking everybody to accomodate it. And these words coming from the most classical test match batsman. Wonderful human.

Posted by Vikramaditya100 on (July 7, 2012, 5:46 GMT)

I think the BCCI should look to find other ways of promoting test cricket. I am sure though the stadiums seem empty.... most of the fans keep a track on the match and scores.... so the BCCI could think of improving radio and online coverage.......

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 16:50 GMT)

A VERY "HAPPY" INFORMATION FOR ALL TEST CRICKET FANS!

No Indian player is in the first 10 of the ICC players rankings ...

No one in Test Batsmen rankings (first Indian is at 11, Sachin, to whom every one is telling to retire!) No one in Test Bowlers rankings (first Indian is at 12, Mr. Zaheer Khan who always has hamstrings) No one in Test Allrounders rankings!

Good luck Dravid!

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 11:50 GMT)

For spectators in most parts of cricketing world, Test cricket died a long time ago with advent of ODIs. Nows its ODIs turn to die with advent of T20. Tests were subsidised by bulk of money made in television rights money made via bilateral ODI series. So its surprising everyone gunning for survival of a format that is more or less dead a decade ago.

Posted by sony_sr on (July 6, 2012, 10:35 GMT)

I love test cricket more than odi and t20s. But its hard to believe a game which spans 5 full days and still can end up in a draw will survive. Ofcourse not a big concern now. But as dravid said, test cricket will be in serious danger after 10 years or so.

Posted by kingcobra85 on (July 6, 2012, 8:55 GMT)

Fans want T20. Eventually fans will win!

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 8:54 GMT)

@landl47, RodStark: Although I'll be happy if india wins their home tests vs. england, a little part of me hopes they lose! The sub-continent victories really mean nothing to me as far as being good in tests is concerned. And for the BCCI, i suppose home victories are the only only thing they are hanging onto. The moment that goes away, it'll be interesting to see how they react.

Posted by maddy20 on (July 6, 2012, 7:22 GMT)

@Sonya Jones I would take a batsman who averages 60 in Aus and 58 at home more than a fast track bully who averages 21 in India(WIz: Ponting). Australian teams are only good at home. Once they tour subcontinent they will get humiliated at the hands of sides with good spinners such as India and Pak. Even at home Aus were whipped by England in Ashes and pummeled by SA. Away from home we all remember 21/9 and 43 all out! No side in the top 5 cricketing nations can beat that. And when England tours India, they are in for a treat on our turning wickets, on which Amit Mishra and Ashwin will toy with the clueless Poms and Aussies. For the record, Aus lost to India 2-0 on their previous two tours to India and this time since its a 4-test series I expect them to go one better and beat Aus 3-0.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 6:19 GMT)

T20 is cricket for people who don't like cricket. If you are satisfied by three hours of cricket, you don't like cricket. After six hours of cricket, I want more. Cricket is also a cerebral game. Players and captains need to balance risk against potential reward. In long format cricket, everything that increases the chances that you will win also increases the chances that you will lose. The thrill of a six in T20 pales by comparison to the high drama of long format cricket.

Posted by landl47 on (July 6, 2012, 3:52 GMT)

@RodStark: I think that's a very cogent and insightful comment. I think there's a distinct possibility that England will beat India in India in the forthcoming tour and India looks to be on the decline even from its current level, with Tendulkar, Laxman, Sehwag and Zaheer all getting towards the end of their careers. If England does win, the issue will be whether that spurs the BCCI to take steps to improve the development process for young players to test level or whether the BCCI takes the view that test cricket in India is not worth saving. I wouldn't care to bet on the outcome of that deliberation. Hopefully, players like Dravid can have enough input to keep India alive as a test-playing nation.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 2:13 GMT)

@hammond: and even if u do go by the comments below the article, most people seem to support dravid rather than oppose him. do you have any idea how angry indians are with the bcci with the way they've handled indian cricket? quite cleary you don't.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 2:09 GMT)

@Hammond: Agreed. But I'm afraid the people who comment on these articles is a terrible sample size. There's still a large number of Indians, including me, who'd much rather follow tests than t20s. But you see, India has a population of over a billion, so even if say 50 million people say they hate tests, that's as high as as England's population! Try and put things in perspective.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 0:58 GMT)

T20 will make cricket more popular. its not abt format, its abt cricket. if u want cricket popular T20 is the way to go.Tests will destroy cricket. who wants to watch one game for 5 days and no results.

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (July 6, 2012, 0:08 GMT)

If Test cricket is a true test of a cricketer's skill, as some posts from my fellow fans suggest, then I am looking forward to the English cricketers playing on the "flat" pitches in my country. It will be intriguing to see how they adjust their "test skills" on away games.

Posted by RodStark on (July 5, 2012, 23:38 GMT)

I think this winter's test series between England and India will tell us a lot about the future. Everyone seems to think that England are lousy in the subcontinent and that India should win easily. But if all the Indian doom-sayers are right, there's a serious possibilty that India's test team really is in serious decline and England might actually win quite easily. As an England supporter, I'd kind of like that, but it really would be a major nail in the coffin of test cricket. If India's team can't beat england at home, then support for test in India is likely to decline REALLY seriously. And that would NOT be a good thing for the game in general.

Posted by bored_iam on (July 5, 2012, 23:12 GMT)

I find it a lil disturbing that people here are so keen on dividing cricket across regions...Asia-T20/ODI, Eng-Aus-SA:Test.... the other argument given by @hammond that Test Cricket can survive without India maybe valid, but whats the point of the game reducing to a 2-team sport like the 1900s? NO growth, is that the aim of the gentlemen's game? Isn't it only recently that the emergence of more teams has made it interesting. A Pakistan whitewashing Eng, a New Zealand upsetting Aus in hobart, B'desh's emergegence (in atleast the ltd. overs formats), the rise of the Irish? Test Cricket has, is and will be safe in Eng, Aus and perhaps SA. Is it necessarily a good idea to let the Wi/ind/pak/sl block slip away?

Posted by aru_aak on (July 5, 2012, 21:51 GMT)

Any format of the game, be it Test cricket, one day or T20 is a competition between the two sides. It doesn't make sense to play test cricket if the pitch prepared favours only the local team. Didn't we see some lifeless test cricket in India where all the test matches resulted in a draw? Didn't we see batsmen just kept on scoring runs on a pitch that had no life in it? This needs to be changed. We need to see some sort of competition between the bat and ball.After all, like the great Rahul Dravid said, batting is not always about scoring runs!

Posted by Stanmclean on (July 5, 2012, 21:08 GMT)

England is the best team in the world right now. They have excellent bowlers and batsman, who can perform consistently. Keep it up.

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (July 5, 2012, 18:29 GMT)

@Sonya: You make laugh...England also prepares pitches to suite their strength and so does Australia. Yes, India were beaten fair and square by both Eng and Aussies but don't forget Ajmal alone beat England 3-0 and Eng drew wih SL 1-1. You guys cannot play on flat pitches. i don't know after how many tries did Australia finally register a series win over india in India under Steve Waugh. We will take our hack players any day over any of the Australian players. Only in Eng have I seen true support for test matches where the stadiums are full not even in Australia or SA or NZ or any other country. And by the way it is not just India who plays t20 ...you guy do as well....

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 16:45 GMT)

India will prepare a flat and boring pitch when England tours this year, just wait and see. The matches will be dull and be played in front of empty stadiums. That's why test cricket is on the decline, especially in India, Pakistan etc. India failed in England and Australia because their players did not have the necessary skills to beat sides who are better than them. Teams from the subcontinent are strong only on paper. I will take Ponting, Hayden any day over some hack player, who can only play on flat pitches.

Posted by ashok16 on (July 5, 2012, 16:34 GMT)

A product cant tell the consumer to challenge themself and use the product. the product has to make itself more interesting.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 16:27 GMT)

dude Hammond i do agree that india hasent performed well in last 2 test series ,but how can u analyze and conclude to the fact that INdia shouldnt try hard for test cricket .I just takes 1 Dravid and 1 Tendulkar to get us back.

Posted by cobra007 on (July 5, 2012, 16:03 GMT)

Cricket has a golden egg in T20 to attract every country and their people around the world to capture , I hope an American would take a lead on this and take it to the next level. Test cricket and Baseball are so old and boring that T20 could replace both and be a challenge to Football (Soccer). These old guys just don't get it, there is no future for Test cricket. Why would anyone play 5 days just to play for draw? Why would anyone bowl to a person who is willing to let it go? What are the odds for being in 11 out of a billion? Even if you are successful in test cricket then your value goes down in T20, Just ask Laxman or Chandrapaul. If i were the head these would be my priority 1. Make it a Olympic sport 2. Take it as a challenge to grow like Football (Soccer) 3. Who ever is playing cricket leagues should make a decent living 4. Every country should play cricket and should be the biggest sporting event.

Posted by 777aditya on (July 5, 2012, 15:43 GMT)

to each his own - if I was a young kid, I would most definitely have chosen the T20 format (ala Malinga) to have a long career and make money quickly - why is it that if some players play the game to get rich quick they are blamed for being base? noble or base, in a country like India where inflation is skyrocketing and most of these players come from humble backgrounds, their mentality will definitely be to make quick money and no one should or can blame them for that

Posted by spinkingKK on (July 5, 2012, 14:35 GMT)

Dravid is half right. Only thing is, in 10 years time, these kids wont' be playing with the best and great cricketers in IPL. IPL will be full of those kids!! Also, test cricket could have that kind of kids playing 3 day test matches as well. So, in 10 years time, those kids (Samit included) will be playing between themselves. There will be no Brian Lara, Tendulkar, Dravid equivalents. There will be some Raina's, Kohli's and George Bailey's, at the very best.

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (July 5, 2012, 12:54 GMT)

@Hammond: If you truly believe the comments by my few fellow Indians here is a representative sample of true test cricket lovers in India, then I am sorry to say u need to take some statistics class in sampling theory. In any case as an ardent fan of "TEST" cricket I sincerely hope BCCI utilizes this mans greatness in developing the future test team representing India. This man along with very few others is an epitome of what cricket in India is all about, Respect, Humility and Greatness. Young aspiring cricketers pl listen to The WALL and you willl be standing tall for a very long time.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 12:42 GMT)

The Wall and Brand Ambassador of Cricket ,, not only India , entire cricket world will be in owe of you , the way you have played the sports . you are Sir Don Bradman of today's cricket .pls convey this to Dravid if possible.. I agree and Its true , practically and economics vise T20 will be the future ..

Posted by Capitalist_Cricketer on (July 5, 2012, 12:33 GMT)

I think the media also has to play its part in ensuring the romance with the longer format is carried on to the future generations. A lot of time a classy test match is not given the space it should be as compared to say a tantrum thrown by an overpaid footballer in UK or say a political news in India. We also need some serious test match world cup soon. Im sure i can take a month off for it without offending my wife or my boss. Haha. But honestly hats off to the Wall and Test cricket both. Would love to see a good India v Pakistan test serious soon on a neutral pitch where its not about flat wickets.

Posted by Hammond on (July 5, 2012, 12:22 GMT)

@Masud_BITK- speak for the "modern children" in your own country. Not mine. Quite a few children are seen watching intently at every test match played in Australia.

Posted by praveen4honestremark on (July 5, 2012, 11:04 GMT)

What is bigger and best??? Thinking time and again; only thing comes to mind is to say cricket is a game played in different formats and each individual has a different opinion on a format. Some say test boring, some say ODI, some say T20. So unless this game cricket is there to be played, why worry about test cricket, or one day or T20. Each of them will survive or perish based on Darwinian principle . The fittest will survive. It is simply called " Survival of the fittest". Let's just wait and see which format will survive better.

Posted by Gagg on (July 5, 2012, 10:33 GMT)

One of the classiest cricket players ever, always had a respect for the guy on and off the field, lots of kids should learn not only from his technique but also his temperament.

Posted by Masud_BITK on (July 5, 2012, 9:36 GMT)

Actually, I learned cricket by playing the test cricket. I am teaching my son to start cricket with T20 and it is a time demand. Test cricket is only for players but not for crowds (!). Therefore, players will earn money by the T20 and then charity their money to test cricket. That's the only way test cricket can survive for another 100 years. I love watching test cricket but not 5 days. I would only be interested only to the highlights. The modern kids do not have that interest any more. Long live test cricket.

Posted by Naresh28 on (July 5, 2012, 9:28 GMT)

Well said @satishchander - BCCI should compensate people like Pujara so that they dont feel that money is only in th IPL. Selected players should feed thru the academy for test players. Its okay tohave the different formats it adds to the excitement and actually brings out different types of players. It also exposes our players to foreign bowlers - a case is Rohit Sharma's century in the IPL against top class bowlers.

Posted by NAZMO-CRICKFANN on (July 5, 2012, 9:12 GMT)

Mr Ravishenkar makes an interesting suggestion . i like that very much

Posted by NAZMO-CRICKFANN on (July 5, 2012, 9:07 GMT)

mr dravid well said i commend you for your bravery and audiosity in making such statement especially to the indian nation

Posted by Nutcutlet on (July 5, 2012, 9:07 GMT)

There is a statesman-like aura about Rahul Dravid; he sees the bigger picture effortlessly and, maintaining the courtesy and the highest level of dignity & sportsmanship he always showed on the field, he puts across his points with grace and due deference. Does India require an ambassador who has all the requisite diplomatic skills to contribute to international harmony and understanding? The man is before you! Regarding his argument to young Indian cricketers in favour of Test cricket's place at the pinnacle of cricketing achievement, he is, of course, right. How else can a player carve his niche in sporting history? How else can a player lay a case for greatness without testing himself against the forensic examination available only in the truest and purest form of the game? Test cricket is also the arena in which your sportsmanship is most sharply defined, because, in the final analysis, Test cricket matters far more than formulaic cricket. Wisdom trumps materialism, every time.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 9:03 GMT)

Great book! must read for everyone ....

Posted by Ravishenkar on (July 5, 2012, 8:38 GMT)

You are 100% right MR.PERFECT. With the growing popularity of 20-20 cricket and IPL every year, our national team might follow the English Soccer team (due to the English Premier League Soccer) which is highly talented with full of stars all ways one of the favourites in all the World cups, Euro Cups, but falls short every time on the international stage. Not only modelling the IPL from EPL Soccer, BCCI should start analyse the forecast of hidden danger that might kills the national cricket. Hope 2011 won't the last international major victory for our Cricket nation. IPL every 2 years is the better option to save the International cricket (both Tests and 50-50).

Posted by YorkshirePudding on (July 5, 2012, 8:09 GMT)

@Posted by on (July 05 2012, 05:40 AM GMT), I agree getting 5 days off for a game is a problem, even here in England, but then most peopl use up holidays or just got a t weekends, as Fridays and Saturdays tend to sell out quicker than any other day. The one big problem with Day night tests is the Dew that gathers during the first hour after dark, especially in the Sub continent, which unbalances the game especially for spinners who have difficulty gripping damp balls, it can also aid swing bowlers such that balls that were not moving would suddenly start hooping around, also I'm not sure if the pink ball lasts a full 90 overs at the moment, just like the white ball cant last 50 overs.

Posted by Hammond on (July 5, 2012, 7:48 GMT)

@ Ranjit S Gulvady - I judge based on numerous comments on this site from your compatriots forecasting the end of test cricket and the rise of 20/20. Just read what your fellow Indians have written. I for one just think India as a nation should et out of it if it no longer appeals. This doesn't mean we all have to follow- other countries have different vieweship habits and different cricketing traditions.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 7:22 GMT)

This article just further underlines why Dravid is one of my favorite cricketers of all time. So much respect!

Posted by satanswish on (July 5, 2012, 7:17 GMT)

Indian Test Cricket future is DEAD for sure. Blame it on IPL, Flop Indian captain and his biased attitude towards non-CSK players. Current Indian team is better suited to play T20 on domestic level only. Let's see how they perform on T20 World Cup as they were knocked out convincingly in previous two T20 World Cups.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 7:15 GMT)

Totally agree with R Dravid. Indeed Test Cricket's future in India is at danger. Most of the people in India who follows Test Cricket, would like to see a blazing century from Sehwag rather than watching a technically sound batsmen like Dravid. Even most of the players who aspire to play Test Cricket would focus on fours and sixes rather than playing the game in a correct manner. Our bench strength which comprises of Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Manoj Tiwari, etc., have never been comfortable against the short pitch bowling and the swinging & seaming conditions. And the problem lies in the basics of technique. And its really hard to believe that we do not have any quality spinners to fill the gap of Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh.

Posted by satish619chandar on (July 5, 2012, 6:47 GMT)

If at all there is anything to be done, open a test academy and emphasize on the importance of the technique and temperament for tests to the sound players.. The players like Pujara who were never comfortable in shorter format need to be prevented from IPL and put to the test academy and paid decent amount so that they don't feel that they miss out the money from IPL much(which is obvious) and concentrate ONLY on tests.. Prepare themselves for the format.. Having specific guys to play tests alone is never a loss for anyone..

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 6:15 GMT)

@Hammond It's funny how you stereotype Indians as test haters. I totally agree with Sam Surrey. Just because 1) we have the IPL 2) the stadium during tests are empty is not an indication of how indifferent India is towards tests. You should stop judging Indians without any real basis.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 5:40 GMT)

I grew up listening to Test cricket on the transistor radio. Nowadays, pure eyeballing at cricket stadiums for Test cricket has surely fallen. Reason: Nobody has the time today to spend 5 whole days watching cricket. Hence, some aspects of Test cricket will have to be tweaked a bit to draw in people to the stadiums as well maintain the highest standards in Test cricket. One such tweak maybe with what Mr Dravid was himself involved in. That is by having day-night Test matches. Since Test matches have a daily duration of two hours; if the matches were to start at 2pm - a match would be over still by 930pm with half an hour breaks after two hour sessions. In the subcontinent however, the matches could start around 3pm instead of 2pm.Another manner to keep cricketers interested in Test cricket is by richly rewarding the players. That would take care of the monetary aspect.The third manner would be to have the Test Championship of cricket(debated and not yet introduced)on a 4 yearly basis.

Posted by addicted_to_chaos on (July 5, 2012, 5:33 GMT)

Insightful and wise words from real master cricketer from India........

Posted by venkatesh018 on (July 5, 2012, 5:14 GMT)

Valid concerns from Rahul. Hope the BCCI too has a long term vision for the future of the game. First they should start with limiting IPL to players over 23 years. This will force the youngsters then to start their careers with Ranji trophy and mould their game to fit both the Test and T20 versions. Hope someone in the cricket committee takes up this suggestion.

Posted by gopakumar85 on (July 5, 2012, 5:13 GMT)

I think Rahul Dravid sounds more sensible than many of the BCCI administrators right now. He speaks sense.

Posted by Sandman5five on (July 5, 2012, 5:11 GMT)

The question that needs asking here is... "What are today's youngsters joining Cricket for?" Personal satisfaction? I highly doubt that. It's more for the fame and the moolah. They see a Sachin and a Dravid and a Ganguly and the likes, they see their monies and the adulation, and think, I WANT THAT. But are they prepared to go through the hard grind to get all that? DO THEY EVEN NEED TO, NOWADAYS?! Today, a rapid-fire T20 hundred on the flattest of pitches can be your claim to fame. It can open a lot of doors and bring you loads of cash. So why sweat over Test Cricket? The minute the BCCI launched the IPL (with Franchisees that have a penchant for throwing mind-boggling monies at the most mediocre talent), Test Cricket's grave was dug.

Posted by satish619chandar on (July 5, 2012, 5:06 GMT)

@Hammond : It is rather an individual opinion rather than a representation of a nation's priority.. The head count of test cricket fans- Cricket fans in India will certainly overtake any other nation.. No offense but our defense..

Posted by venkatesh018 on (July 5, 2012, 4:49 GMT)

Valid concerns from Rahul. Hope the BCCI too has a long term vision for the future of the game. First they should start with limiting IPL to players over 23 years. This will force the youngsters then to start their careers with Ranji trophy and mould their game to fit both the Test and T20 versions. Hope someone in the cricket committee takes up this suggestion.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 4:33 GMT)

Rahul you have elevated the status of test cricket by just being a part of it and you have created a everlasting legacy for kids to take test cricket seriously. Although the today's world is largely driven by deficiencies, still there are guys who want to become genuine cricketers like Rahul Dravid

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 4:25 GMT)

@venkatasriram55: Air travel may have become more popular today but it still doesn't offer the fantastic experience of traveling by train! The same applies to cricket where T20 might be commercially viable but will never be able to produce the pure entertainment and class of test cricket. In Australia, region train tickets cost more than bus simply because there are people willing to pay for the more fun experience of riding on rail tracks.

Posted by anver777 on (July 5, 2012, 4:16 GMT)

A perfect lesson for kids from a perfect man who has tons of experience !!!!!

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 4:14 GMT)

Well, the onus should be on the ICC and respective Cricket boards to place more importance on test Cricket by organizing more test matches in their international calender, which is not happening right now. Also, the players are just like everyone else, who will want to earn more money to secure their future and look after their families. For the readers, it's easy to pass judgements on such players who decides to go for the big bucks, but if they were in that same position, they would have opted for earning more money as well. Anyway, I feel that in order to make test Cricket popular once again, some changes could be made!!!

1) Organize a World Cup for Test Cricket 2) Have reserve days available if play is unable to take place due to bad weather 3) Prepare more competitive pitches, which will ensure higher probability of a result 4) Ensure play doesn't stop regularly due to bad lights etc 5) Teams with higher run rate etc could be awarded extra points

Posted by praveen4honestremark on (July 5, 2012, 3:28 GMT)

@ Hammond .... Can you please read this post so that you can understand India better- praveen4honestremark on (July 05 2012, 01:03 AM GMT)

Posted by Alexk400 on (July 5, 2012, 3:12 GMT)

He is a true international Indian cricket hero!. No one else come close.

Posted by cricketWI on (July 5, 2012, 2:23 GMT)

To finish completely with Test cricket means that you are throwing away all those countless moments of rich cricketing history, not to mention all the efforts cricketers, past and present, have put in. Nothing is wrong with t20 cricket but it certainly can be said that it is seriously affecting Tests. Test cricket is what 'real' cricket is all about because it tests the character and skill of the player, but if test cricket is no longer exciting, it means that cricket today is no longer about the game, but rather more about the money. How can cricket be presented to the non cricketing world as a great sport if the only part being presented to attract them is the money and not the art of it.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 1:55 GMT)

Test Cricket has been on a state of decline for a while and with the advent of T20, it is beginning to lose its popularity, especially in some Cricketing nations. There are several reasons for this and one important factor is flat and favourable pitches being purposely prepared to suit the home side players, especially in the subcontinent. These lifeless pitches produce dull Cricket, which no one wants to see. Furthermore, ODI and especially T20 in recent times are able to bring higher revenues and attract bigger crowds, which test Cricket is unable to do. Personally, I feel that test Cricket itself needs to be revamped and allow some form of competition to take place every few years to decide which country is the best. There are several such ideas floating around for a while now, but ICC is too slow to implement them.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 1:27 GMT)

i love cricket because of some great cricketers like Rahul Dravid, Sachin, Kapil Dev, Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilcrist, G. Mcgrath, Lara, Injamam, Lee, Kalis, A. Donald, Fenny Devilliers, Walse, Ambrose, Wasim Akram . I am still trying to find the shade of these players in new generation of players. The day my hope will go by, i will not watch cricket. . ..

Posted by chaitanya1219 on (July 5, 2012, 1:06 GMT)

well said RD complete R.E.S.P.E.C.T one of da gr8est batters world ever saw his technique patience determination command over da game are matchless... and RD has some serious point in here young LADS shudnt sell demselves short and shud aim 2 play more test cricket as test cricket is pure form of cricket and den challenges posed in dat format shows ur true character and makes u perfect hope and wish young lads listen 2 wat RD said and follow it

Posted by praveen4honestremark on (July 5, 2012, 1:03 GMT)

Tests or One days or T20's are equally important for game of cricket. All are different and all have different charisma. What is important for organizers of game is that, keeping all the three formats alive and played; but not in EXCESS. EXCESS, the word i use here doesn't only for T20, but tests and one day matches. Some times westerners get us wrong that we only see T20 matches and One days. We equally like tests, but the fact remains is to have a living in India midst the global crisis and competition is tough, we sacrifice our liking at a times and started enjoying what ever in the little time we get. But when we have time we don't even stop watching Test matches. In countries like India test matches should be planned carefully seeing the month of play, summers are best for tests. And also a day night test or test during weekends or during festivals a day night test is best option. Organizers if can make things right, then all will be fine. The mistake lies with ICC, BCCI.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 0:40 GMT)

Great players great examples of its kind but I bit anyone will listen. KP is retired due to T20, Afridi will retire as well due to T20 and some more interasting faces will diappear from the cricket which is pretty bad.

Posted by Hammond on (July 5, 2012, 0:36 GMT)

@Vijay Vepakomma - don't speak for the rest of the world. If India have had it with Test cricket/international cricket then fine. Don't play it. In Australia and England we will still be playing and watching the greatest game. You can have whatever is left.

Posted by ZalimHK on (July 5, 2012, 0:29 GMT)

I belive Dravid is best batsman amonge top indian batsmen.

Posted by moBlue on (July 5, 2012, 0:21 GMT)

the great test cricket ain't going anywhere! i know T-20 is the new thrill, but like any new superficial love affair, it ain't gonna last - at least, not exclusively... and even if tests disappear for a time period, somebody with money is going to tap into the deep yearning that will be out there among us fans [including among those who may not have seen any test cricket but who might have romanticized it even more!] for the killer test cricket of the last 20 years, and test cricket will come back roaring, perhaps in a different form [i don't mean the 5-day, 2-inning, international format will be changed, i hope not, but that an annual or biennial test championship, or something like that, far more result-oriented, may evolve!] the reason i say that is simple: unlike some of y'all who are also test cricket fans, i have never even considered ODIs as being cricket, though i enjoyed the world cup every time, and though i've watched plenty of ODIs, let alone think of T-20 as "cricket"?!!

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 22:38 GMT)

i think inter-national cricket has run its course, time for a new masters test cricket league (like masters golf)

Posted by landl47 on (July 4, 2012, 22:30 GMT)

Dravid is as wise and sensible as he was talented and determined as a cricketer. A great cricketer and a great man. Any young player (not just among Indians) who follows his advice and his example will be well served.l

Posted by S.Jagernath on (July 4, 2012, 21:22 GMT)

Its a shame that watching Rahul Dravid's solid concentration on greentops is something of the past.With Sachin Tendulkar heading out,there is almost nobody left that can handle a greentop against a quality attack.

Posted by plow on (July 4, 2012, 21:10 GMT)

Dravid has a good point, and i reckon it is time to put huge sums of money on a test championship. Prize money each year of 50 million for example, the moneys there... it just needs to go to the big prize of winning the test championship.

Posted by SanjivAwesome on (July 4, 2012, 20:49 GMT)

I agree with Dravid. I just hope that future India kids don't get sucked in by the serpent of greed called t20. Certainly the India fan - and I am afraid to count myself in this group - love IPL. Which does not mean that I don't like watching Tests. Merely that I cannot afford to take 5 days off work to watch the thing live in a stadium. I am not that loaded!

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 20:49 GMT)

Test cricket will always be the highest form of the game. I am not and old timer, just an avid cricket fan and someone who has played cricket at a serious level. I've been to the national cricket academy in 2007 at under 19 batch and friends with the likes of Saurabh Tiwary, Manish Pandey, Tanmay Shirvastava and Vikas Mishra. You can be rest assured that all of these guys have a high regard for first class cricket and the longer form. I also feel the rest of the world feels that Indians don't care about test cricket, not true at all. Yes, in India we follow test cricket keenly, however the fans aren't too keen on watching test cricket in stadiums because frankly speaking, there is an excess of supply of cricket for an ordinary middle class Indian cricket fan. The stadium experience leaves a lot to be desired and one would rather watch test cricket from the comfort of their air conditioned home or office.

Posted by Princepurple1979 on (July 4, 2012, 20:19 GMT)

Dravid may not have the highest runs or maximum hundreds, but he definitely is the most respected Indian player in the world right now. His selfless nature and concern for the team are qualities that I wish some other Indian players, including some seniors, would adopt. Respect you a lot Mr. Dravid.

Posted by Thunee_man_Naidoo on (July 4, 2012, 20:13 GMT)

In time to come I'm sure the current cricketing environment will nurture young cricketers who have the patience to play tests yet the explosive power to play T20's

Posted by murad357 on (July 4, 2012, 19:58 GMT)

Ambrose, Walse, Wasim Akram, Warne, Lara, Dravid, these are the players why I watched cricket for ... don't see anyone close to them now a days ... some time I feel empty when I think about their games ...and know that never gonna see them playing again. (It also reminds me that I am getting older :D )

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 19:28 GMT)

Well said Rahul.Test cricket is still the pinnacle of the sport, and where the real young talent will ultimately be judged, even in the future. Pudpat-with all due respect u clearly have zero idea what ur talking about. Look around u today-u say t20 is the future, but the players and boards of all countries still regard test cricket as the ultimate. it's only indians that are starting not to,and that's only 'cos they r useless at it cos of IPL.

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 19:27 GMT)

Another Kishore Kumar -- His achievements were always hidden behind Sachin, just like Kishore da's talent was hidden behind Rafi and Mukesh. And now that he has retired, he is being missed.. I have always admired the way he played.. Very honest cricketer..

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (July 4, 2012, 19:20 GMT)

@NAHEEM: Agreed with your first post but in ur second u say as if India is the only one who plays t20..FYI there s ICC sponsored T20 WC which India won the first one, PAK and then Eng..

Posted by NAHEEM on (July 4, 2012, 18:45 GMT)

friends i donot think that t20 iz future...for indian it may b.so thats way they r destroying themselves by choosing t20 over test,,,,

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 18:19 GMT)

@NAHEEM

You said my opinion as well. Dravid is an ideal role model for all budding cricketers across the cricketing world.

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 18:13 GMT)

with all due respect to Dravid.. am not buying it.. could have chosen better list of authors!

Posted by MasudRUETeee091040 on (July 4, 2012, 18:12 GMT)

A good advice to the young players.

Posted by wibblewibble on (July 4, 2012, 18:11 GMT)

Dravid is and was phenomenal - he shouldn't have retired in my opinion. Having said that, as an England fan, I like him even more now he has retired!

Posted by SagirParkar on (July 4, 2012, 18:09 GMT)

This man probably deserves the Bharat Ratna more than any other current cricketer.. not just for his achievement on the field of sport but also for the values he upholds and advocates and for being an excellent role model !

Posted by timus6778 on (July 4, 2012, 18:05 GMT)

there can't be another wall....never ever...Respect

Posted by Solace1 on (July 4, 2012, 18:00 GMT)

Oh Rahul sir, please don't spoil india's next generation by asking them to play test cricket, everyone knows t20 is the future, so we need to produce good t20 players for the future,its great to watch too, won't you be happy if your son samit one day wins the ICC CHAMPIONS LEAGUE with Royal Challengers Banglore??

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 17:51 GMT)

Take a bow ESPN Cricinfo for the wonderful work on Rahul Dravid.. I really appreciate the work done...

Posted by Min2_cric on (July 4, 2012, 17:44 GMT)

i completely agree with Sir Rahul Dravid...he's someone whos got d potential to raise quality cricketers for d country...

Posted by sundarb on (July 4, 2012, 17:40 GMT)

I am waiting for Rahul to write his own autobiography. I think he is an excellent writer, very precise in his choice of words (much like his crisp batting). After all, he wrote the foreword for Steve Waugh's autobiography. Rahul said 'Steve gave the word grit a good meaning'. Rahul gave the word 'Wall' the true meaning. Ever dependable. Rahul is trying his best to encourage youngsters to consider Test cricket, the problem though is that monetary incentives and the effort out of players are extremely tilted towards T20. The gentleman is dying.

Posted by   on (July 4, 2012, 17:29 GMT)

Rahul THE RESPECT DRAVID.....

Posted by Hammond on (July 4, 2012, 17:26 GMT)

Rahul- respect. But if you have to try and convince India's young cricketers to "try" test cricket then you have already lost. India should stick to the shorter forms of the game and let the other countries that still value test cricket play tests.

Posted by StatisticsRocks on (July 4, 2012, 17:17 GMT)

Salute to SIR Dravid "THE WALL"

Posted by venkatasriram55 on (July 4, 2012, 17:15 GMT)

the game will change with times. I remember my grandfather saying that train travel was the best - air travel takes away all the fun. Test cricket today is something like that....Test players are a dying breed...Kudos Rahul

Posted by Paras.Rishi on (July 4, 2012, 16:56 GMT)

The Wall - Respect!

Posted by NAHEEM on (July 4, 2012, 16:47 GMT)

100% rite because test cric iz original cricket where u have show physical and mentel control.....thats ways people call u the wall....i m pakistani but one thing about u after ur achievements for india in international cric u should b rewarded with SIR title...

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