BCCI's faith in team and captain justified: Srinivasan
The 4-0 clean sweep against Australia in the just-concluded Test series has justified the BCCI's faith in the team and its leader Mahendra Singh Dhoni, according to Board President N Srinivasan who said a "stern" test awaits the team when they tour South Africa.
Lauding India for its historic series victory over the Australians, Srinivasan said the BCCI "always had confidence in the team" despite its below-par performances in recent times.
"It is very nice to see India winning. We always had the confidence in the team. We understood that the team was going through a period of transition after some great stalwarts of Indian cricket chose to retire. But I think our faith in the team, the captain and the players have been justified," he told NDTV."Cricket is a sport. In sport you cannot be winning all the time. I don't think that the Indian players want to lose. They also want to win, they fought hard. Sometimes they had bad luck, circumstances were against them. But overall, we should be proud of our cricketers," he said.
Image: MS Dhoni
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters
Srinivasan was particularly happy with the way India bounced back after the 1-2 defeat at the hands of England at home in the previous series, but said stern tests awaits Mahendra Singh Dhoni's men when they tour South Africa later this year.
"Against England I thought maybe were little bit unlucky at times, but the team regrouped and performed extremely well against Australia. But we will have tests in South Africa and New Zealand towards the end of this year and early part of next year."But all of that is part of building of a team and the character of the players will also come out," he said.
Image: England team
Happy with Pujara's, Vijay's performance
The BCCI chief, however, refused to comment on the selectors decision to drop the frontline opening duo of Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir for under-performance during the series against Australia.
"I don't comment on selection matters. But I think overall the selectors have been very sincere and have been trying their best looking at the present and future of Indian cricket," Srinivasan said.
Without directly stating that Sehwag and Gambhir's exclusion was the correct decision, Srinivasan praised the performances of of Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara and Shikhar Dhawan.
"I don't have to say that," was his immediate reaction when asked whether the changes made in the team have borne out results or not.
"What we should be happy about is the performances of Shikhar Dhawan, Pujara and Vijay. The team is looking different, looking confident. The bowlers also have performed well," he said.
Image: Cheteshwar Pujara
'Dhoni has always been playing a good role'
Asked whether it would be difficult for the likes of Sehwag and Gambhir to make a comeback in the team, Srinivasan said, "It is for the selectors to answer. All I can say is that the team looks good."
Srinivasan spoke highly of Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who is also the skipper of his IPL team Chennai Super Kings. "He (Dhoni) has always been playing a good role. He has always been an outstanding player.
"We can't forget that he has captained India to two World Cup wins. He is an experienced captain. I think he has sailed well through all ups and downs," the BCCI president said.
Srinivisan also refused to give a direct answer when asked whether he backed Dhoni when the selectors at one point of time thought of replacing the wicketkeeper-batsman as skipper after the disastrous tour of England and Australia.
"It is not proper to discuss what happens in a selection meeting. But the constitution of the BCCI does say that the president has to approve the national team," Srinivasan said.
"I definitely believed that the team should be backed," he said.
Image: MS Dhoni