There are not many role models in the current Indian cricket set up other than Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma and the seniors do not command much respect from the youngsters, feels former flamboyant all-rounder Yuvraj Singh.
During a live Instagram question and answer session, deputy skipper Rohit asked Yuvraj about the difference between the current team and the players who played alongside the left-hander.
“When I came into the team or when you (Rohit) came into the team, our seniors were very disciplined. Obviously, there was no social media so there were no distractions," said Yuvraj.
“There was a certain behaviour that we boys had to carry, how they talk to people, how they talk to media. Because they were the ambassadors of the game and India."
But it is not the same anymore, feels Yuvraj.
“So that is what I had told you guys. After playing for India, you have to be more careful about your image. But I feel the third generation. There are only you two seniors, Virat and you, who are playing all the formats, rest of the guys are coming and going.
“I just feel there are very fewer guys to look up to and I feel that a sense of respect towards seniors, that has become a thin line now. Koi bhee kisiko kuch bhee keh deta hain (anyone can say anything to anyone)," said Yuvraj.
Yuvraj, one of the best cricketers the world cricket has seen, said the players during his time were conscious of whatever they did.
“I think juniors, because of social media, party scenes, these things, we could not even think about that in our time. Because we had that fear that if we do some mistake our senior will tell us that do not do this, this is not right," he said.
Commenting the infamous incident involving Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul, who were suspended for their loose talk on women on a chat show, Yuvraj added: “That incident could not have happened in our time."
Rohit on his part said the atmosphere in the team is “very light" at the moment. “When I came into the team, there were so many seniors. I think I was the only youngster alongside Piyush Chawla and Suresh Raina. The atmosphere is light now. I keep talking to the youngsters, the five-six of them."
“I speak to Rishabh (Pant) a lot. There was so much scrutiny on him and he got worked up. The media should also think before writing about him. But scrutiny will be there as long as you are playing for India."
On the mindset of the younger generation, Yuvraj said most of them only want to play limited-overs cricket.
“Sachin (Tendulkar) paaji told me once ‘if you perform on field, everything else will follow’. I was at NCA once and I interacted with the younger lot. I felt most of them did not want to play Test cricket which is real cricket. They are happy playing one-day cricket."
“I feel even the players who have already played for India should play domestic cricket when they are not on national duty. It would give them valuable experience of playing on different surfaces around the country," Yuvraj added.