Every Australian tour is packaged with pitfalls, both for individual and the team itself. The team pitfalls come on the field, via the Aussie juggernaut. But the individual holes are dug by the team management and in some cases, allegedly by the players themselves. Ganguly’s apparent refusal to carry drinks as the 12th man comes immediately to mind.But these individual issues mostly get resolved as time goes by, but the real problems are the ones that are caused by loud mouthed non media savvy administrators of the game who don’t think before their speak. Jayawant Lele’s comment did more for the downfall of the ’99 team than the potent Aussie bowling or the impotency of the Indian top order.
Lalchand Rajput’s case of “foot in mouth” and the subsequent denial is the latest example. The funny thing though is that almost every one of these media missteps happen right before or during an Australian tour. Is the Australian media to blame? Or is the egoistic Indian cricket administrators the cause?I think its more of the latter. Indian cricket has always been ruled by men with scant regard for the rigours and pressures of the game. Or if they have some experience, these same men seem to be afflicted with selective amnesia once they decide that they want to be an administrator.
Early this year, one of the ad hoc managers who went to South Africa, a man from the armed forces, if I am right, seemed to do a good job and the job of a full fledged media manager was pooh poohed by the powers that be. Perhaps it is time to take this job more seriously. For, never before has the case for a media coordinator for the Indian team made so inadvertently and yet so forcefully.