Sunil Gavaskar's scathing criticism of Duncan Fletcher has paved the way for other former greats to voice their opinion on the embattled Team India coach ahead of the Twenty20 World Cup starting in Bangladesh this weekend. Gavaskar started lambasting Fletcher soon after the Asia Cup ended last week. Former Indian stars have now joined the Gavaskar bandwagon, slamming Fletcher's style of working. (Read: 10 reasons why Gavaskar is angry with Team India)
Former Test off-spinner Erapalli Prasanna has said: "If you are a professional and are being paid for a job you need to prove yourself through performance. Things have not worked out well for India since Gary Kirsten left." Interestingly, it was Kirsten who proposed Fletcher's name to the Board of Control for Cricket in India. Fletcher had reasonable success with the English cricket Board, his previous employers. (Watch: Top-5 instances when Sunil Gavaskar slammed Team India)
Bishan Singh Bedi has gone one step further, saying Fletcher has no connect with the team and doesn't care if India wins or loses. He is a mercenary. Another left-arm spinner, Maninder Singh, feels: "We still have almost a year to go for the World Cup. We need someone dynamic who can take tough calls." Gavaskar spoke on similar lines.
Madan Lal, who also coached the Indian team in the 90s, said: "Even I have a better record on foreign shores than Fletcher. While we Indian coaches have never been retained after one poor outing, Fletcher seems to be enjoying himself despite failing to produce the goods."
Sixty-five-year old Fletcher's contract expires this month and the chorus of voices asking for it not to be renewed any further is growing louder by the day.
According to Gavaskar: "You have dropped Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Harbhajan Singh, Yuvraj Singh for lack of performance, so why can't you drop the support staff for the same reason -- lack of performance."
Gavaskar is backing Rahul Dravid to take over Fletcher's job. Dravid, Gavaskar feels, is well respected by the players and will be more intense in his work ethics.