Former India cricketer turned commentator analyst Sanjay Manjrekar has said he has no issues with players who are sensitive about criticism, citing his own example from his playing days.
In a probable reference to the Ravindra Jadeja 'bits and pieces' episode during last year's World Cup, Manjrekar said it's natural for players to be sensitive. Manjrekar had called Jadeja a bits-and-pieces cricketer, after which the all-rounder took to twitter to slam the comments. Jadeja even celebrated his half-century in the World Cup semifinal against New Zealand by pointing to the commentator's box.
"Players are sensitive. I used to be sensitive. When Dilip Vengsarkar criticized me in his column, I slipped a note under his door, trying to counter all his observations. So I don’t hold it against players when they react,” Manjrekar told R Ashwin in an Instagram chat on Sunday.
"When Sachin Tendulkar reacted to a column I had written as well, I kept quiet."
Manjrekar, who was dropped from BCCI's commentary panel earlier this year, said the best way for players to deal with criticism is to ignore them.
"The best way for players to deal with people like us is to look at us as garnish. We are unimportant. They are the players, their performances are all that matter. Nobody is going to be dropped because Manjrekar said so," he said.
When Ashwin asked Manjrekar if he saw players with a critical eye because of what he expected of himself as a player, Manjrekar said: "If I did something wrong, it’s because I tried too hard. I try to stay true, there is no agenda.
"I know my boundaries. That’s why I’m still around. Otherwise I would have been finished as a commentator five years ago. But Indian fan following is unique. They love somebody so much that they don’t want someone like me finding flaws with him."