Former Indian Twenty20 greats have blamed excessive importance given to Tests and ODIs for India's decline in the format, criticising veterans Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman for ignoring T20 commitments in order to prolong their Test careers.

"The loss to England in the recent T20 international is a sign of our decline from being world champions to also-rans," said Joginder Sharma, delighted to be asked his opinion on anything at all. "Veterans are concentrating on meaningless Tests and one-dayers, and are not giving due importance to T20, the format most beloved to our players. It's disgusting.

"There's simply too much Test cricket being played, and it's affecting our T20 performance. Look at the recent series - Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh and Gautam Gambhir all picked up injuries playing Tests, and our T20 team suffered as a result," said Sharma. "Now these players may not be fit for the upcoming Champions League.

"What's more, there are many more Test and ODI commitments coming up - which may not leave enough time for the players to recover fully to give their best in the next IPL. Clearly the BCCI is showing preference for these meaningless international fixtures over the domestic T20 calendar," he complained.

Another T20 legend, Ravindra Jadeja, agreed with Sharma. "Players like Tendulkar, Dravid, Zaheer and Laxman always ignore their T20 duties to focus on Test and ODI cricket - doesn't this lead to an erosion of T20 skills? They should follow the example of younger players and play more T20, building up basic skills such as mindlessly swiping at every ball, bowling with a defensive mindset for four overs, and ignoring the smoking hot cheerleaders [sigh] when fielding in the deep. The way things are going, such crucial skills will be lost forever, and we will never regain our past T20 glory," Jadeja said, before shouting "Inquilaab Zindaabaaaaad!" - making it the second-most inappropriate usage of the phrase in recent weeks.

"It's time these veterans learned the value of delighting sponsors and TV audiences instead of spending all their energies chasing chimeras such as enduring Test records, classical batsmanship, all-time greatness and other such old-fangled nonsense," Jadeja added, speaking from painful personal experience.

Sharma and Jadeja have suggested several remedial measures the BCCI can take to arrest this alarming trend - such as reducing the number of Tests and ODIs played, instilling the proper values in schoolboy cricketers by paying them obscene amounts of money, and making renowned T20 lover N Srinivasan the president of the BCCI.

"We are taking the suggestions seriously. We have already implemented one of them. Heh heh," said N Srinivasan, president-elect of the BCCI.

Meanwhile MS Dhoni has said India are confident of defending their hard-earned No. 3 ranking in Test cricket, and praised his team for working together to achieve the goal.

"It's not easy to be ranked No. 3 in the world at anything. Even the casual observer would have noticed the whole team contributed during the recently concluded series against England to ensure that we were ranked No. 3 - so we can be proud of what we've achieved.

"It's easier to get to the No. 3 ranking than to stay there. You need to maintain the high levels of poor preparation, dodgy fitness and general mediocrity. So the hard work begins now," he said.

When someone pointed out that his team had actually slipped to No. 3 from the top spot, Dhoni winked and said, "Well, I guess you can now refer to us as the Roger Federer of cricket teams. Now, that ain't so bad, eh?"

Anand Ramachandran is a writer, comics creator and videogame designer who works when he isn't playing some game with an "of" in its name. He tweets here. All quotes and "facts" in this article are made up, but you knew that already, didn't you?