'Agar aapke pass hai to bata do' Rahul Dravid's epic reply to a journalist's question

"Agar 6ft 4' bowler hain aapke paas toh aap batado (If you know someone 6ft4 bowler let us know).

India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin training under the watchful eyes of head coach Rahul Dravid; Credit: Twitter/@BCCI
By Kshitij Ojha | Feb 16, 2023 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

India began the Border-Gavaskar Trophy on a high note, defeating Australia in the first Test by an inning and 132 runs. Both innings were controlled by India’s bowlers. In their two innings, the visitors were swept out for 177 and 91 runs. India, on the other side, amassed a massive 400-run total, led by skipper Rohit Sharma’s century. With the second Test due to begin on Friday, February 17, the hosts will be hoping to continue their winning streak. The second Test of the four-match series will be played at Delhi’s Arun Jaitley Stadium. Ahead of the match, India coach Rahul Dravid addressed the media. There was one query on the scarcity of quality left-handed pacers, which was answered by Dravid savagely.

A journalist approached Dravid and asked him about the team’s lack of great left-arm pacers. The media person posed the issue, mentioning Mitchell Starc of Australia and Shaheen Shah Afridi of Pakistan as examples. He even questioned why India has been unable to produce excellent pacers such as Ashish Nehra and Irfan Pathan. However, Dravid responded in a brilliant way to the reporter. The coach stated that the squad is also taking this matter seriously. He also stated that the squad understands the value of having excellent left-hand pacers, but they cannot be considered if you are solely in that position. He went on to say that Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra were passed over just because they were left-handed fast bowlers. He then highlighted the newcomers Arshdeep Singh, Khaleel Ahmed, and Mukesh Choudhary.

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“A left-arm fast bowler brings a lot of variation. You forgot the name of Zaheer Khan. But selectors and management definitely watch out for these talents. Arshdeep Singh played well in the recent ODIs, he also played Ranji Trophy, where he picked 4-5 wickets. He’s young, he’s developing. There are other guys who are performing. But only being a left-handed pacer will not help you get into the side, you need to perform as well,” Dravid said. “Agar 6ft 4′ bowler hain aapke paas toh aap batado (If you know someone 6ft4 bowler let us know). You took the names of Mitchell Starc and Shaheen Afridi, but in India, we rarely find someone as tall as 6ft 5′ who bowls left-hand fast,” he added.

Starc might miss the 2nd Test as well

Mitchell Starc, Australia’s fast bowler, has conceded that he is behind where he would want to be ahead of the second Test in India, but Cameron Green’s prospects of playing have boosted considerably following a solid nets session in Delhi two days before the match. Both players missed the first Test in Nagpur owing to finger injuries sustained during last year’s Boxing Day Test against South Africa. Starc did not accompany the squad to Nagpur, instead staying in Sydney to bowl four sessions at home, two with a splint on his middle finger to safeguard his tendon injury and two without.

“There’s still a fair bit of restriction there,” Starc said. Still lacks a bit of strength and has been in a splint for six weeks. But it’s progressing – not as fast as I would have liked, but it’s as planned in terms of the medical stuff. There are a few boxes to tick but it’s on track. I’d like to be a little further down the road. Still a good chance. It’ll come down to how it reacts by the end of the day, how the medical staff see it, and how the selectors and Pat [Cummins] and Ronnie [Andrew McDonald] feel about it as well. I’ll do everything I can to be fully available for selection. Then it’s a discussion for the rest of the group involved.”

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