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Dravid is close to my heart: Koertzen

Press Trust Of India
Nov 15, 2011 at 10:59pm IST

Durban: Former umpire Rudi Koertzen on Tuesday revealed that Rahul Dravid is one player who is extremely close to his heart.

Stating that he is extremely fond of the former India skipper, Koertzen said, "Dravid is so close to my heart. I just admire that boy. I love the passion in him. He is called the 'The Wall' back home."

The 62-year-old from South Africa, who retired from umpiring last year, said that he misses the trips to India and see Sachin Tendulkar play in front of his home crowd.

Dravid is close to my heart: Koertzen

Rahul Dravid brought up his 36th Test century at the Eden Gardens on Monday. (AP Photo)

"It is amazing to see Sachin play, especially in India.

Sometimes you would not find too many spectators watching a match in the stadium, and then a wicket fall and he would walk into the field and suddenly you would see a whole lot of people walk into the stadium out of nowhere," he observed.

"People are so passionate about cricket in India and the crowd is so good that I really miss going to India after my retirement," he added.

He also admitted that other than Dravid and Tendulkar, he has been a great admirer of Virender Sehwag.

Koertzen was officiating in the World Cricket Legends match between India and South Africa.

Insisting that it pains him when Sehwag gets out playing a silly shot, Koertzen said that he warned him all the time not to get out to a bad shot.

"I always told him, whenever I used to officiate in a match in which he was also playing that 'if you get out to a bad shot, I will give you a hiding outside the stadium'."

Meanwhile, coming out in the support of the Umpires Decision Review System (UDRS), he said the technology is good.

"While the on-field umpires get only a split second to decide, the replays help in making more appropriate decisions, which is good. If the correct decision is being made, it is always good. So what is the harm in using the UDRS?" he asked.

Koertzen has stood in 108 Tests, a world record 209 ODIs and 14 T20s.

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