Rahul Dravid is most game-aware person I have ever known, says Ravichandran Ashwin
The off-spinner also spoke about the mental aspect of cricket.
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The Tamil Nadu man was speaking during the launch of Aakash Chopra’s book Numbers Do Lie and was quite vivid in his description about the methods of Rahul Dravid.
”Rahul has to be the most game-aware person that I have ever known and this attribute often goes unnoticed, but then you have to sit back and admire this trait. Game awareness is often the most underrated parts of the team but when each of the 11 players think and know about their roles it takes the team well ahead of the competition. I witnessed it first hand against England and firmly believe that the English team were far ahead when it came down to game awareness than the other teams,” Ashwin said.
Matthew Hayden, the former Australian opener too heaped praises on the Karnataka-man and said that there was always the sense of passive aggression in Rahul Dravid.
“Talking about game awareness and there was no better person than Rahul Dravid. There was no sense of superstition in his game and the way he setup his entire innings was just fabulous. He is probably the Ivan Lendl of cricket,” said Hayden.
Coming back to Rahul Dravid, Ashwin was responding to a question which asked him to compare Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid since he had shared a dressing room with both of them.
“With Sachin you will have to consider the 1990s and early 2000s when he was just fantastic,” Ashwin said.
“Rahul Bhai was fabulous when it came to thinking about the game and he not only added value with his advice but also made sure that you are on the same page. His advices would not only be restricted to batting, well you associate batsmen with only their batting and they would more often than not be full of themselves and would only speak about their game. With Rahul bhai it was very different, he understood almost all the skillsets which is needed in the game and his nuances were fabulous. He also won quite a few matches as a captain and I am not one bit surprised,” Ashwin further added.
In case you didn’t know...
Another startling stat which was thrown up during the discussion was the two batsmen who have won the most number of matches for their country in Test history are Inzamam-ul-Haq and Rahul Dravid and Ashwin’s analysis of Dravid is a testament to the prowess of the man.
There have always been comparisons between Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid and there is no denying the fact that both these players and their legacy will always stand the test of times and in many ways will add gloss to Test cricket.
Dravid is currently the coach of the Indian U-19 team and there could be no person to instil the much talked about game awareness into the young players.
Cricket is much more than just batting and bowling, it is more to do with the mental space and Rahul Dravid adds so much value in this regard. There is little doubt that Indian cricket is in great hands with Rahul Dravid honing the skills of young players.