Rahul Dravid, currently the mentor of Delhi Daredevils (DD) has heaped praise on the team’s captain Zaheer Khan. Dravid said Zaheer is aggressive and he has been impressed with the way he has led DD. He also mentioned that a lot of young cricketers look up to Zaheer. Dravid also believes that there is a good pool of young and talented players in DD this time and playing in front such huge crowds in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 will only help them in their careers. DD played against Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede Stadium and Dravid felt that his side will emerge on top, if they do the basics right. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Delhi Daredevils (DD), IPL 10, Match 25
Talking about Zaheer, Dravid said on the sidelines of the game, “He has been very good. He likes to be aggressive, he likes to move the game around, which is really good. Just hope that he doesn’t get too cute, he has been terrific. Zaheer has been a really good captain, really impressed with him. Been working with him in the last couple of years. He is tactically very good. And good around the group as well. Lot of the young kids really look up to Zak. Really enjoyed working with him.”
DD have youngsters like Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Sanju Samson and Karun Nair to name a few. Dravid is hopeful that they carry their experience from the IPL into their First-Class careers and also into the international level, if they get a chance. “Very excited [with the young talent]. Really great to see some of the batting talent we have seen, even in this IPL and what I have seen in the last couple of years in the Under-19s. The quality of the batsmanship has been exceptional. [A] Lot of these people pushing each other, challenging each other all the time. Just the creativity and the skill level in the batting is really good,” DD mentor said. READ: IPL 2017: Mumbai Indians defy Rabada, Morris to clinch low-scoring clash vs Delhi Daredevils
“Fast bowling as well — some really good talent, good spinners as well. Hopefully they can use this platform and it is really great for the young Indian talent to play in front of this crowd and under this kind of pressure. It’s actually priceless and hopefully they can take that into the First-Class level. Hopefully when they do play for India, they are not too overawed by these kind of situations,” he added.
Dravid believes with the Wankhede having an excellent track and the boundaries small, any team will be chasing the leather if a batsman gets set. “Things can change really quickly on this ground as we have seen. It’s one of those grounds where you can’t think too far ahead. It’s a small ground, it’s a really good wicket. We have seen people get out after starts, couple of batsmen get set and you can be really chasing the leather here. We just have to keep our feet on the ground and keep doing the basics well,” the former Indian captain said.
On his coaching style Dravid said, “My style is don’t mess up people too much, don’t cause too much damage. As coach all you can do is prepare the players and do the best you probably can off the field. Make sure that the environment is good, they’re relaxed, happy and get what they need to put the performance on the field. But once the game starts, there’s very little you can do, especially in a fast paced game like T20. You have to rely on the captain: it’s the captain’s team once the 20 overs start.”