Chappell–Ganguly Controversy - 2007 World Cup and Aftermath

2007 World Cup and Aftermath

The controversies and tensions surrounding Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Greg Chappell came to an end after India's poor performance and early elimination from the 2007 Cricket World Cup. Ganguly was selected as part of the team under the captaincy of Rahul Dravid. India was seen as one of the favorites to win the tournament, but senior BCCI officials indicated that India's performance would decide the future of Greg Chappell' stormy tenure with the Indian team, and determine the credibility of his coaching methods.

India's fortunes were immediately endangered after a stunning defeat to the underdogs Bangladesh in its opening group match. Sourav Ganguly top-scored with 66, but he was criticised for scoring at a slow run rate. Although Indian batsmen amassed more than 400 runs for an easy win over the newcomers Bermuda in their second match, Ganguly scoring 87, the media still severely criticised the team leadership and the players. India faced a must-win situation as it faced-off against Sri Lanka in its final group match. Sri Lanka scored more than 250 runs to set a challenging target for the Indian batting order, which failed dramatically. For all practical purposes, India's World Cup campaign ended with its defeat to Sri Lanka, although it was not formally eliminated until Bangladesh achieved its predicted victory over Bermuda in the final group match.

Facing a barrage of criticism and public anger, and lack of support from the BCCI, Greg Chappell resigned as India's coach. After much deliberation, the BCCI decided to retain Rahul Dravid as India's captain for the summer of 2007, but chose not to appoint a high-profile coach for the time being. Former Indian players Venkatesh Prasad and Robin Singh were appointed as specialist bowling and fielding coaches respectively, and former Indian captain Ravi Shastri was temporarily appointed as coach-cum-manager for India's tour of Bangladesh. Shastri was succeeded as manager by Chandu Borde for India's tour of England.

Ganguly emerged with prolific figures in both Test and ODI cricket in the year 2007. He scored 1106 Test runs at an average of 61.44 (with three centuries and four fifties) in 2007 to become the second highest run-scorer in Test matches of that year after Jacques Kallis. He was also the fifth highest run-scorer in 2007 in ODIs, where he scored 1240 runs at an average of 44.28. He formally retired in 2008. In 2008, veteran South African batsman Gary Kirsten was appointed head coach of the national team after a less-publicised selection process. Kirsten brought in Paddy Upton as a mental coach, and Prasad and Singh were retained in their specialist roles.

Kirsten coached the Indian side to World cup Glory in 2011 under the captaincy of Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Dhoni acknowledged the role of "quartet", i.e. Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble (all current or ex-players of the Indian team) in shaping the team that won the world cup.

Read more about this topic:  Chappell–Ganguly Controversy

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