“Azhar used to throw the ball at you and ask what field you want” - Venkatesh Prasad 

Venkatesh Prasad and Mohammed Azharuddin
Venkatesh Prasad and Mohammed Azharuddin

Former India pacer Venkatesh Prasad has termed Mohammed Azharuddin as the best captain he played under. During an international career that lasted from 1994 to 2001, Venkatesh Prasad played under Azharuddin, Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly.

On The Grade Cricketer podcast, Venkatesh Prasad was asked to name the best captain he played under. Without getting diplomatic, the former player chose Azhar. Explaining the reason for his choice, Venkatesh Prasad said:

"I can be very diplomatic here. I can easily say that 'look, everybody is different in their own way'. But I was always comfortable when Azhar was the captain because he used to just throw the ball at you and would ask what field do you want. And when I set a field, I own the responsibility to bowl to that field, isn't it? So that's how it was."

Venkatesh Prasad further elaborated that he had no issues playing under Tendulkar or Ganguly but pointed out that his best came under Azharuddin. The 51-year-old explained:

"It wasn't as if I was not comfortable with Sachin or Ganguly either, but I guess my best performances came when Azhar was the captain, and that's how it was. Also, Azhar happens to come from Hyderabad, and Karnataka and Hyderabad aren't very far, so we knew each other very well. We used to play against each other, also together when there were zonal teams. So that's how the rapport and understanding was much better."

Venkatesh Prasad has his say on Virat Kohli and Sachin Tendulkar

In the same podcast, Venkatesh Prasad also commented on how Virat Kohli and Sachin Tendulkar are different in their demeanours while agreeing that both are legends in their own right. The former pacer said in this regard:

"They are both brilliant individuals, honestly speaking. On one side, Sachin was very soft, and of course, Virat comes out aggressive, but it’s not his nature. It’s just on the field because he wants to win and perform in every single game."

In the 90s, Venkatesh Prasad formed a successful fast bowling pair with Javagal Srinath.

The duo recently reunited for a TV commercial, where they are seen as members of a boy band. The ad has been very well received for its refreshing concept and presenting Venkatesh Prasad and Srinath in an unexpected avatar.

Venkatesh Prasad represented India in 33 Tests and 161 ODIs, claiming 96 and 196 wickets, respectively. He was a master of the slower ball in an era when T20s did not exist.

Edited by Bhargav
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