Kolkata: Iconic cricketer Sourav Ganguly's television commentary reminds former India coach John Wright of ecletic tennis superstar John McEnroe, now a popular figure with the mic.
In the city for a promotional programme, the New Zealander hailed Ganguly's decision to call it quits from all levels of the game and said it might be for his successful stint in the commentatary box. "He is 40 and is doing a good job as a commentator. His direct, to the point comments reminds me of John McEnroe. I'm interested to see more of him. He is doing really well," Wright said.
Remembering his association with Ganguly, a stint that saw the rise of Indian cricket, Wright said, "It's always worthwhile to come back to Kolkata. That was a fantastic time (in Indian cricket). We challenged each other. We had endlesss debates, there were times when we agreed and disagreed. We all were passionate about working together. In Sachin (Tendulkar), (Rahul) Dravid, (Jawagal) Srinath, (Anil) Kumble, VVS (Laxman), (Harbhajan) Singh, we had a group of players who had the desire to become worldclass cricketers." the former India coach said about the chemistry he shared with Ganguly.
He questioned the ICC's approval of the much-debated concept of playing day-night Test and wondered whether it would work in reality. "I'm a traditionalist. I'm not so sure about its feasibility if a Test is played in New Zealand under freezing cold conditions. It might have been done to get more TV viewership and attract more crowd," the 58-year-old said here.
Asked to comment on the current phase of Indian cricket under coach Duncan Fletcher, the 58-year-old said: "Let's hope Indian cricket is going forward. We had our challenges, while Gary's (Kirsten) stint was well-documented. But Fletcher has not finished yet, for me to make a comment about his coaching." But he appeared concerned about India's plight overseas, after their back to back eight Test defeats. "You have to stem the flow. To be No 1, you need to win Tests overseas," said the New Zealander, veteran of 82 Tests between 1978-93.
Indian cricket's rise began with Wright's successful association with Sourav Ganguly. India became No. 1 Test team under Mahendra Singh Dhoni but slipped down the ladder following their 0-4 whitewash in England and then an equally ignonimous outing in Australia. But, Wright said, it's early to judge Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. "They had reached No 1 status under Dhoni and he has been successful for the side. You always have ups and downs."
Wright also said that the great Sachin Tendulkar should be left alone to take a call on his cricketing career. "Great cricketers like Tendulkar know the pride they carry about representing India. Their awareness level is always high, that's why they are great."