A BATTING WITH BIMAL BREAKING REPORT: Duncan Fletcher would have been fired if he were Indian, says Sunil Gavaskar

Gavaskar believes Fletcher would have lasted nowhere near as long if he were Indian

Former India batsman Sunil Gavaskar has announced his shock at the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) decision to give coach Duncan Fletcher a one-year extension and stated that if Fletcher had been Indian, he would have been sacked.

“An Indian coach with that same record would not have got the extension,” Gavaskar said. “Have a look at the past – everytime an Indian coach has not done well on a single tour, he has been removed. Just see the way India lost to England and Australia away. Team did not even win the Asia Cup or any other title. They lost the tri-series in Australia too.

“It is a little bit hard to react since I did not know that it (Fletcher contract) was coming up for discussion (at BCCI Working Committee). Goodluck to him though as this gives him the opportunity to better his record over the next year.”

Since Fletcher took over, India have lost 10 out of the 24 Test matches they have played and their away record has been extremely dismal, as the last match they won away from home was nearly two years ago when Fletcher had just signed on as coach.

Former Australia batsman Dean Jones agreed with Gavaskar’s views, saying that Fletcher had not done anything to convince him that he was deserving of an extension.

“I thought Fletcher would get better results with Team India than what he has got till now,” Jones said. “He has lost a couple of Test series badly and he hasn’t won any of the major trophies either (World T20, Asia Cup). Many people, just like Sunny, might believe that Duncan is a bit lucky to have got the extension. May be an Indian coach would have got the axe, as Sunny said.”

Gavaskar also expressed his infuriation with the national selectors and their eagerness to make changes to the squad when players are not performing to the best of their abilities.

“Once a team is selected, I do not think it’s fair to comment adversely on the player as it could demoralise the individual,” Gavaskar said. “May be we can debate before the selection and present our views. Similarly in Fletcher’s case we should now back BCCI and hope team does well under him now.”

However, both Gavaskar and Jones believe that Fletcher should have been axed or made to sign an extension until the conclusion of the 2015 International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup.

“Yes, it makes sense to have him right till the end of next World Cup because in case a new coach is appointed in 2014, it would be difficult for that person to have a positive impact on the team,” Gavaskar said.

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