Gary Kirsten, a former India head coach, has spoken up about his time with the Indian team. He said that when he started, renowned batter Sachin Tendulkar was unhappy and considering retiring.
In an interview with Adam Collins on the YouTube programme “The Final Word cricket podcast,” Kirsten claimed that Tendulkar was extremely dissatisfied with his appointment as the Indian team’s coach and suggested that Tendulkar might want to consider quitting the sport.
“Sachin was certainly a standout for me since I joined the team at a time when he was quite unhappy. He thought he had a lot to contribute, but he wasn’t having fun playing cricket, and he was nearing the point in his career where he thought he might as well call it quits,” said Kirsten.
The former South African hitter claimed it was crucial for him to get along with Tendulkar and give him the impression that he had anything to offer the Indian team.
“It was crucial for me to connect with him and give him the impression that his contribution was greater than what he needed to do for the team,” Kirsten continued.
The most crucial factor, according to Kirsten, was to find the right leadership to take an exceptionally talented Indian team and convert it into a world-beating team. When India won the 2011 World Cup in Mumbai, Kirsten served as the head coach.
“What then stood out to me was what type of leadership was needed to take this incredibly gifted team and transform it into a world-beating team,” said the author. Any coach entering that scenario would have struggled with that, according to Kirsten.
He continued, arguing that he looked for things that would help the players play cricket for pure joy, that there was a lot of fear and discontent in the team when he took over.
There was undoubtedly a lot of fear among the team when I took over. There was a lot of sadness, so for me it was more crucial to comprehend each individual, where they felt they fit in the squad, and what would inspire them to play cricket for fun only, Kirsten continued.
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