Laxman believes India will bounce back soon enough
Just under six months ago, former India batsman VVS Laxman bid adieu to international cricket, but recently, the stylish and technically gifted player admitted that he believes he is still fit enough to play Test cricket.
Asked if he was certain that he would be able to keep up with the hardships of the five-day format, Laxman pondered over the question over a while before saying: “Maybe.”
Laxman also offered some words of wisdom to the struggling Indian batsmen, saying: “It’s just about converting starts into big scores. Whenever a set batsman converts his start into a big score and the others rally around him, you usually post a healthy total for bowlers to defend.”
While ex-players like Sunil Gavaskar and Kapil Dev believe India took their eyes off the prize ever since winning the 2011 International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup, Laxman defended the team, stating that their record in the limited overs format had not been too bad.
“I think we have done well except for these two games (losses against Pakistan) in the one-day format,” Laxman added. “I think, after the World Cup, we still had a decent run and even in T20.
“We did not qualify for knockouts in T20 World Cup… we played four games and lost one badly and did not qualify. Overall in T20 and one-day cricket we have done well.”
However, Laxman gave full credit to the Pakistani bowlers in their 3-2 win over India in the five-match ODI series.
“I think in the two matches I thought Pakistan bowlers need to be credited, the way they bowled and there are some marvellous and attacking fast bowlers Junaid (Khan), (Mohammad) Irfan and Umar Gul all three of them,” Laxman said. “I saw the match in Kolkata (and) both Junaid and Irfan bowled fiery spells like they did in Chennai, So I think Pakistani bowling attack was really penetrating.”
There have been mounting calls for India to dump their senior players and replace them with youngsters, but, according to Laxman, the national selectors have been one step ahead and have already injected the fresh talent the national team so desperately needed.
“It’s already there, you see the batting line-up… it’s good mixture of youth and experience and they will do well in the future,” Laxman said. “Indian cricket is going through a transitional phase. There are lots of youngsters who are getting opportunities and I am sure they will do well in the future.”
When asked about the day he announced his retirement, Laxman said: “I mean I had great run playing for India. At some time you have to move on and I think that was the right team for me after playing sixteen years.”