Barring Rahul Dravid, who always avoids controversy, the former cricket legends of Team India have upped the ante against Greg Chappell, who almost ruined the Indian cricket because of his dictatorship attitude and monopoly. It was master blaster Sachin Tendulkar, who started the debate and got support from fellow cricketers.
Sachin minced no words to expose Greg Chappell in his book, “Playing It My Way”. He revealed that Guru Greg had no respect for Rahul Dravid as Captain and wanted to replace him in 2007. Chappell had tried to convince Sachin Tendulkar to take up Rahul’s job, but in vain. Sachin called Chappell a ‘ringmaster’.
Although Greg Chappell was quick to dismiss the claims in the book, saying he never tried such things, former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly coroborated Sachin Tendulkar’s claims. ‘Greg always wanted to rule by doing such things and it was no surprise,” he said. “He lied continuously to save his job and later wanted Dravid to be removed. I shared this with Rahul. He knew about it, but could not control Greg,” said Ganguly. However, Rahul Dravid expressed his ignorance about any such talks between Sachin and Chappell, saying he was not aware of it.
Ace spinner Harbhajan Singh too came out in open to criticise Greg Chappell. “He destroyed Indian cricket to such an exent that it required almost three years to get back on track. There were seven guys that he wanted to be out of Team India. Sourav Ganguly was his main target followed by myself, Virender Sehwag, Ashish Nehra, Zaheer Khan and Yuvraj Singh,” he added.
Zaheer Khan recalled how Greg tried to manipulate things and even issued threats and warnings. “I remember one day he came up to me and said, Zaheer, you will not be playing for India till I remain the coach,” revealed Zaheer. VVS Laxman too joined the debate and revealed how he was being pressurized to open the innings even though he was doing well in middle order. Laxman refused to give in to Greg’s diktats. “When I defied him, he asked me my age and said Don’t you think 31 is too young an age to sit at home? I was astonished to hear this,” added Laxman.
One Greg Chappell cannot rubbish the statements of all senior Indian cricketers, who did their best to bring laurel to the country. He had become a liability to the team because of his hatred towards the senior cricketers and wanted to impose his will and thought on the players, which was never tolerated.