'We can make a difference'

Ace batsman throws his weight behind Kumble and Srinath

 Rahul Dravid during a media interaction at KSCA on Wednesday. DH Photo

During an interaction with the media here at the KSCA on Wednesday, Dravid called on the members of the association to vote for change and vote for the better. “There are a variety of reasons behind this decision (contesting elections),” said the right-hander without getting into the specifics. “A lot was not happening and we felt we needed a change. We needed some fresh ideas and I feel that Anil (President candidate) and Sree (secretary-aspirant Javagal Srinath) and the whole team, together not only do they bring in huge amount of experience to the game but also a great amount of exposure the way the cricket is run, administered and played,” elaborated Dravid, who flew down here on Wednesday morning from Hyderabad to do his bit in the campaigning for the November 21 elections.

Dravid also addressed the issue of whether Kumble’s team will have time to spare for the association if elected. “I know people have raised the issue of time,” he noted. “But I think it’s important to understand that people like Anil bring in functional leadership and not a token leadership. It’s about time management and the team that has been put together whether some one like Sadanand Maiya, Tallam Venkatesh, MR Srinivas, who is vice-president of a multi national company or even other cricketers such as Sujith (Somasundar), Vijay (Bharadwaj), Venky (Venkatesh Prasad), Roger (Binny), Sudha (Sudhakar Rao) they have all been in the system. These are all people who have gone outside the game and been successful and are willing to contribute and bring in their ideas. It’s about the quality of time and not the quantity and knowing Anil and Sree, once they make a commitment then they will make the time to ensure that things work. It’s also about empowering people, it’s about delegating the responsibilities. It’s not being there all the time and every time but it’s about educating people around you to do the job,” he explained. 

In their early 40s, both Kumble and Srinath have a number of lucrative avenues to explore but the fact that, Dravid pointed out, they have chosen to get into administration needs to be applauded. “It’s a great sacrifice in a lot of ways,” remarked Dravid. “At 40-41, to be willing to take up responsibility and to come forward to do something when there are many more other opportunities, then you need to be appreciated. They might probably have other opportunities but the fact that they are willing to do lot of things for the association and provide better facilities to players and members is what I am proud of,” he stated.

As far as opposition is concerned, Dravid said, he had only respect for them. “There are people we have seen as kids and some of them have also been selectors to us and we do respect them. But we also respectfully feel that we can add a lot more at this stage and we can make a difference. We hope and feel that members will recognise that,” he observed.

It was Dravid who played a crucial role in putting together a formidable team under Kumble and the 37-year-old promised he was willing to make time to assist in the running of the association.

“As a current player I obviously can’t contest the elections. But I will be attending the meeting through my club (BUCC). I hope I will work closely with Anil and his team, putting my ideas forward. I do have some ideas to improve cricket and infrastructure from what I have seen across the world and I hope I get a chance to implement it over the years,” he signed off.

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