With his exceptional performances, Kapil Dev inspired many youngsters to take up the sport in the country. One of the greatest all-rounders to have graced the game, Kapil is the owner of innumerable achievements, with India’s World Cup winning show in 1983 under his leadership being arguably the most prominent one.
The legendary cricketer however feels that the current lot of players are much better than many in the previous generation.
“The current lot of players are highly inspiring. I can’t just mention one or two names but I can easily say that there are a number of cricketers who are much better than many former greats. And there is a kind of respect between the current stars and former greats. We admire and enjoy the game that is played today and respect the popular players of this era. The credit for keeping the interest of Test cricket among the fans goes to these talented players. And it’s good to see fans accepting the current bunch of players,” said Kapil on the sidelines of the inaugural function of Golden Eagle Golf Championship at the Prestige Golfshire Course here.
Having shared the stage with all-time greats such as Ian Botham, Richard Hadlee and Imran Khan, Kapil feels the yesteryear stars are not beyond comparison but he says it is unfair to judge the current crop early.
“It’s very unfair to compare former greats to the current crop of good players. Because at the end of the day, it is the numbers that matter and I feel today there are many talented players with good records under their names. I believe we must give a cricketer at least 50 Test matches before making a judgment. These days, analysis of a player is made way too early. If a player performs well in just one or two Test series, we judge him to be the best batsman or a bowler. That’s not the way to measure the quality of a player,” explained the 57-year-old.Kapil, who claimed 434 wickets and scored 5248 runs in Tests, is a firm supporter of the longer format of the game despite T20 cricket’s growing popularity.
“I always hope and pray that Test cricket shouldn’t lose its relevance. Some young kids on the block consider shorter format of the game as exciting and they are attracted towards it. But I strongly believe Test cricket is still the best format,” he asserted.
Quizzed who is the best all-rounder at present, Kapil was quick to offer a witty response: “I am and will always be the best all-rounder.”