‘Every time we pick a XI, we disappoint people’ - India head coach Rahul Dravid opens up on challenges with team selection
"I don't say I am perfect at it. I'm not saying that I get it right all the time because it does affect you. That's the hardest part of coaching or leading teams," Dravid said.
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In the last couple of years, the selection committee and the team management faced a lot of backlash as several promising cricketers failed to make it to the national team, despite doing well in the domestic arena. Sarfaraz Khan and Prithvi Shaw even shared cryptic posts on their social media handles after not getting an opportunity, while within the team veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin too failed to make it to the playing XI on a few occasions.
Ahead of the two-match Test series against West Indies, the scenario was the same. Sarfaraz Khan’s exclusion and Cheteshwar Pujara getting dropped were questioned by a lot of people on various social media platforms and addressing this issue, current India head coach Rahul Dravid said that no matter who is selected, a big section of the fans will remain disappointed as there are only 15 players who can be part of the squad and thus, at times, they do leave some good cricketers out.
The 50-year-old eventually confessed that the management does make some errors in judgement at times and stated that he is not perfect all the time but he eventually feels bad for the players missing out as he has personal connections and is emotionally attached with many.
“You care for each of those people whom you coach, on a personal level as well and you're trying to build personal connections. You want to coach them as people and not so much as cricket players. And when you do that, you want all of them to succeed. But at the same time, you've got to be realistic and realise that not all of them are going to succeed. At times you've got to make those tough and difficult decisions,” Dravid said during the episode of 'Cred Curious'.
“Every time we pick a Playing XI, we disappoint people; there are others who are not playing. Every time we pick a 15 for a tournament, there are a lot of guys who feel they should be there. And you feel bad for them at an emotional level. But at least we all try. I don't say I am perfect at it. I'm not saying that I get it right all the time because it does affect you. That's the hardest part of coaching or leading teams – having to make those tough decisions about people you truly want to succeed and do well. But you can only pick so many players, forced by the rule,” he added.