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Chat: 'No one forced Ganguly to retire'

Pradeep Magazine is the author of Ganguly's forthcoming biography.

October 8, 2008, 9:22 PM IST
Chat: 'No one forced Ganguly to retire'

Pradeep Magazine is the author of Sourav Ganguly’s forthcoming biography.

krishnendu: You you have to rate Sachin, Sourav and Rahul as both test and one day player, what will be your rating?

Pradeep Magazine: in Tests, Sachin, Rahul, Sourav in that order and in one-dayers, Sachin, sourav and Dravid in that order.

Harpreet Singh: Don't you think Ganguly's retirement will serve as worst example for future crickters who are inspiring to captain India one day?

Pradeep Magazine: I don't think so, but such things do leave a bad taste and shows the insensitive nature of the establlishment.

Ash: Hi, I don't know nor do I want to know if Ganguly made the right decision, but is India ready to replace a left-hander with another left-hander?

Pradeep Magazine: it will be difficult to replace him even with a right-hander!

Vivek Gupta: Pradeep, how would you analyse Ganguly's exit? You are his biographer. Will it be the last chapter in your coming book?

Pradeep Magazine: Well, it could be even the first chapter.

Suyog: I think he will always to remembered as one who changed the onfield attitude of Indian Team and took it ot another level, do you agree?

Pradeep Magazine: completely

Ganesh Pathan: Has the BCCI been fair in selection process in the recent past?

Pradeep Magazine: I thnik to a large extent yes, you may debate a coupe of decisions but generally they have done a good job.

Mohit Puri: Does Ganguly's retirement put extra pressure on other senior players to perform in this series?

Pradeep Magazine: Why should it?

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Vivek Gupta: What is the greatest achievement of Ganguly?

Pradeep Magazine: To have made India believe in itself and to have withstood unbelievable amount of pressure.

g2: Do u think Ganguly 's decision will affect this upcoming series?

Pradeep Magazine: No, not negatively at all. If anything it might spur him and his teammates to do better.

Harpreet Singh: Sir, don't you think advertisement assignments played a part too in deteriorating a cricketer?

Pradeep Magazine: I don't think that is true. if that was the case, we would not have seen the FAB five playing for so long.

Bhaskar Paul: As cricket critic and commentator how you rate him?

Pradeep Magazine: Very high as a captain and a good batsman, surely the best left-handed batsman India has ever had.

Rajesh: Why media speculation is more, when players like Ganguly fail in an odd series?

Pradeep Magazine: Sheer lack of imagination, want of better stories and using sensationalism to sell.

Vivek Gupta: Should he see his carrier in new format of the cricket T20 being a coach or an administrator or a captain that everybody wants to see?

Pradeep Magazine: He may even decide to become a commentator, given his skills as a speaker!

ssaran: Hi Pradeep, all of us know that Dada has this habit of surprising everyone. I think there is one more surprise in store for all of us. Just in case if Dada scores big against AUS, he might just come out of his retirement and decide to continue. What's your take?

Pradeep Magazine: Again a difficult question to answer. If he does exceptionally well then the media, the people and the board would want him to continue and he may well change his mind, who knows?

raj: Do you think the selection process should be opened up so that the world comes to know on what basis a player has/has not been selected rather than have speculations on what conspired?

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Pradeep Magazine: I think the selectors should tell the world on what basis did they discard a player and pick up a new one, so that there is not too much speculation over these issues which do not do any good to the team morale.

Earnest: Now that Ganguly has decided to retire, will he be associated with selecting future Indian cricketers?

Pradeep Magazine: Difficult to answer what his future plans are. He himself may not have given any thought to it.

ullas: Could Ganguly be able to focus on the current series provided he is been emotionally affected by his retirement and some kidnap news of his daughter? Don't you think Ganguly should have opted out of this series?

Pradeep Magazine: I think he decided to retire to ease off pressure on himself. He has seen very tough times and has always performed above himself in pressure situations, so I think once the series starts, he will be completely focussed on the job at hand.

swapnil shashank: If you go by performances then Dravid should go first, then why the axe kept on hanging for Ganguly only? Can't anyone smell some politics behind this?

Pradeep Magazine: If you go by the form book, then you are 100 per cent right.

sharadmani: Dont you think the real problem is with the BCCI and selectors? they must act sternly on all those who are out of form to drop. the name, carishma etc should not come while taking the decision. if this really happens. no body will dare to stick to the team like a glue despite loss of form.

Pradeep Magazine: As a generalisation yes, those out of form should be dropped. But players who have performed with incredible success will always get a longer rope.

sandesh oggu: what would have been the reason for his sudden retirement?

Pradeep Magazine: I guess a combination of feeling humiliated and realisation that he can't go on for too long in any case.

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Arun Gopalakrishnan: Hi Pradeep, when Kiran More says that nobody should question Ganguly's statement about retirement, don't you think More himself is responsible for ending one of India's finest batsman's career prematurely?

Pradeep Magazine: Yes, More is the one who treated Ganguly with complete disrespect and got him out of the team, so he has no business now to shed tears for him.

Earnest: I think BCCI needs to formulate a plan where cricketers have a honorary way of quitting cricket. Do you think this is a good idea?

Pradeep Magazine: Well, you can't force a cricketer to quit. The final choice is his. It is upto the selectors to decide who they want in the team. Having said that, these players have contributed so much to the Indian team that the least they deserve is to be told before they are going to be dropped, so that if they think they can't make a comeback, they can announce their retirement.

Madhur: Hi Pradeep. Coming back to the upcoming India-Australia series, do you think Dravid and Sachin will be back in form and perform the way they are known of?

Pradeep Magazine: They may not perform as well as they have when in their peak form, but I am sure they have it in them to score heavily.

Varun: Hi Pradeep, don't you think Ganguly should not feel bad about his ignorance and exclusion in Indian team since he was not performing up to the mark especially when youngsters are really doing a great job for Indian team?

Pradeep Magazine: From his perspective he has made runs in the tons ever since his comeback to the team. He, like all the rest, failed against Sri Lanka, so he feels that why should he be the first one to be targetted.

Girish: Is it fair to say that Srikkanth's observation of Ganguly was spot on in spite of him being at the helm of the selection committee for only a short period of time? I did feel that the previous selection committee could have spoken to Ganguly prior to announcing Irani match team and discussed about his future plans with the game. The unneccessary distraction and Ganguly feeling bad about the omission could have been avoided and it would have been a happy exit for one of the finest cricketers India have ever produced.

Pradeep Magazine: I agree with you. They could have told him why they don't want him.

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Prem Mohanty: Will Ganguly continue to be a part of IPL or we shall soon see him going the VVS Laxman way. Even SRK was not too pleased with his performances in this season?

Pradeep Magazine: I thnik it will be impossible for anyone to make a Kolkata team and not have Sourav in it. The fans will revolt!

Madhur: Is this the right time for Rahul Dravid to announce his retirement?

Pradeep Magazine: This is a question which only Dravid can answer himself. His has been a great contribution to Indian cricket and I am sure he will regain his form in this series.

Partha Chauhan: Do you think anyone can fill in Ganguly's shoes? It was his character which revived Indian cricket since 2000 after the match-fixing scandal.

Pradeep Magazine: It will be difficult to replace a man who combined in himself leadership skills, aggressive attitude on the field, tactful handling of the juniors and great batting skills.

Ram: I saw Sourav in very close quarters this morning. He seemed pretty relaxed. At least there was no evidence of distress externally. But having played for 14-15 years, what must he be going thru'? Since you are wriiting his biography, you will the next best person after Sourav himself to answer this Q.

Pradeep Magazine: I think he is relaxed at the moment and focussing on doing well. He was angry when he was dropped from the Irani side and also felt humiliated by this VRS talk. But once he announced his retirement he has felt relaxed.

Prem Mohanty: Hi Pradeep, does this announcement mean that Ganguly will also be given a final shot in the England ODI's?

Pradeep Magazine: No, he has said he will quit after the Australian series and in any case he is not part of the ODI squad at the moment.

Ashok Jha: Hi Pradeep. There is a word going out in a section of media that all the senior players have been told to select their timing to quit voluntarily and gracelly otherwise the board will give them marching orders. How far is this correct?

Pradeep Magazine: As far as I know this is not true. I have tried to confirm the news but am told that no such directive has gone from the board. Even the players have denied this, so I gues, the media which is doing these stories should quote the Board official who is saying this and not just rely on their source. This source journalism in stories like this is not right.

Krishnan: Why is that only in the Indian cricket team we talk a lot about seniors and juniors difference unlike in other international country teams?

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Pradeep Magazine: I think there is too much media scrutiny in India and just a couple of failures and we condemn them. There is very little reasoned analysis of the team and the players and we forget cricket is a sport where success and failure alternate in good measure.

AsciiDude: What next for Ganguly, after retirement?

Pradeep Magazine: I guess, he will join his father's business. They have Asia's biggest printing press and there is no dearth of money or work for him.

Chandan: All of us know today what the Indian Cricket Team we see is because of Ganguly and players like Sachin, Dravid. But the same kind of passion for cricket is not seen in many youngsters. What is your comments on this?

Pradeep Magazine: I don't think it is true that the same kind of passion is not there in the younger players. They are inexperienced and once they get to play international cricket they and we will know how good they are.

Bhaskar Paul: Sourav is ROYAL BENGAL TIGER. In a jungle only one Tiger remains. A day will come when Sourav will write some past stories in his cricket carrier. Then we will get to know the facts behind his retirement. What is your assessment on his retirement? Speak out from the bottom of your heart.

Pradeep Magazine: Well, there is no doubt that all the seniors are at the fag end of their careers. It is up to them to decide what is the right time to go or for the selectors to decide whether they want them in the team or not. I think the selectors and the media are being unfair on Ganguly for singling him out from the pack for one series failure where all the batsmen flopped.

Ashok Jha: The announcement of retirement of Sourav is voluntary or thrusted by BCCI

Pradeep Magazine: I don't think the BCCI has anything to do with his decision. But he sure has felt humiliated by not being picked up for the Irani Cup. He is also angry that there is this talk in the media about voluntary retirement which he and most of the senior players deny. In the end I think the pressure got to him and he decided to call it a day.

saiprasad: Hi Pradeep. Is India moving towards the Australian way of selectors telling seniors in advance when to retire?

Pradeep Magazine: I don't think we are heading in that direction. I don't think the Australians tell their players when to quit, though they might be sounding out those who have served the team well that they are planning to drop them and leaving the choice of quitting or not to the player.

shan: Was it fair exit for great player like Ganguly?

Pradeep Magazine: Difficult to answer what is fair and unfair in this case. He has taken a decision and let us respect it.

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