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September 12, 2000

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Farewell Indian cricket: Kapil Dev

Kapil Dev's resignation letter to Board of Control for Cricket in India president A C Muthiah.

Mr A C Muthiah,
Board of Cricket Control for India.

Subject: Thank you and farewell Indian cricket

Dear Sir,

Thank you very much for the kind fax sent to me by the board secretary. While I am honored and deeply respect the fact that the board still wishes to retain me despite all that has happened I would like to resign on my own accord. There are several reasons to this decision.

Let me start by saying, that I would have resigned at the very onset of the controversies. But I am sure certainly of what I have done, and more definitely of what I have not done. I was waiting to be cleared by the investigating agencies before I gave in my resignation as I did not wish it to look like some kind of admission of any guilt to resign as soon as the scandal broke.

Now, even though I know that the report will be submitted only later this month, unfortunately I cannot wait till that happens as the camp for our boys begins in two days and I would not like to start a job I will not finish. It is in the interest of a game that I truly love, that I wish to opt out of the job at this stage.

But, before I bid adieu to the game that gave me so much and then took a great deal of it away on the mere hearsay of a third party, I would like to for the last time give my views on a few issues that need to be highlighted, if the game I loved so dearly is to survive.

I stand by what I say and would only reiterate whatever I have said in the past, rather than trying to avoid the truth, and yes I do maintain that our Board of Control now needs a semblance of professionalism to take cricket to greater the heights. There is no doubt about the fact that this same board has taken Indian cricket to great heights. We have come far ahead of where we started, but times are changing and fresh blood is being brought into every field, so why not cricket?

If we don't do that we may plummet even lower. When I speak of professionalism I would like to give you an example close to home.

It is sad that the board could not inform me first of my appointment as coach and then of the extension. It is rather strange that I have to get my news through the media who always seems to be in the known of things before the concerned people themselves. Hence my effort to send you this letter directly, before speaking to the press.

I would strongly urge the board to look for dedicated people rather than yes men which they seem to be in the habit of doing. These men may be doing what is good for official x, y or z, but will it benefit the game? The other thing which has always surprised me, is - - why was I ever appointed coach of the Indian team? I am not a yes man, I have never been one and everyone is fully aware of it. There seems to be no faith in my ability or capability. In fact I get the feeling that I was being put down on every occasion. I have taken what came to me but I would request the board to be kinder to the next coach and give him his due respect if they have the welfare of the game at heart. This is not a battle of flexing our muscles. The game which has been murdered has to slowly be brought back to life.

I feel especially sorry for the boys who have been shown the door without the investigating agencies' reports coming out. Please do punish the guilty but don't slaughter someone before they have been proved guilty. You will never be able to bring the innocent back to life. They will have to live with the shame of this forever even if they are innocent.

Sir, I write this letter to you with all sincerity and honesty. I am carrying a great deal of bitterness and hurt within me which I pray will slowly decline with time. I loved cricket dearly and I owe the game and the country everything. In fact people would often accuse me of not returning enough to the game. I took this job because I felt that maybe some of my critics were right and I was being self centered. Today I walk away from all this with no more regrets and no sense of guilt. The game that gave me everything has now taken its pound of flesh from me. I now go without looking back and will be happy if the board would not associate me in any way with it's future plans of events connected to cricket.

By the grace of God, what I have done on the field is something that nobody can wipe out. I have that to live with and it is helped substantially by a clear conscience. I wish all my previous associates from the board and from the field all the best I only hope that if per chance I ever meet them, time will have washed away some of the wounds within me. I would always like to greet them with a smile.

Farewell Indian cricket.
With regards,
Kapil Dev

P.S. My special regards and best wishes to the energetic Mr Lele. He will have to look for a new whipping boy now.


Mail Cricket Editor