Rahul Dravid, captain of the Rajasthan Royals, believes that the best players should play for their country.
"I would love to see him bowl at Lord's (where West Indies is playing England in the on-going first Test match). It has been a terrific pleasure to play and watch him bowl in the IPL. Bowlers of that quality and class should be playing Test cricket ," were Dravid's comments on West Indian Sunil Narine, who is the leading wicket-taker (21) for Kolkata Knight Riders in this edition of IPL.
"It is always important for all the young talent to continue their impressive run in the IPL into the domestic circuit too. We have seen in the past some of the players who did so well in IPL failing to come good in domestic cricket, say for instance in Ranji Trophy. Here, I think Ajinkya Rahane (Dravid's teammate and leading scorer for Rajasthan Royals in this IPL) is an exception," the batting great explained to another query.
"There was some exceptional Indian talent which really impressed me in this edition. To name a few Rahane was outstanding. Shikhar Dhawan batted beautifully. Awana is showing lot of promise. Mandeep Singh is another young and solid player. Of course, I am not surprised by Rayudu's batting for he has been around the scene for quite some time," Dravid said to a query.
Reflecting on the loss to Deccan Chargers on Friday night which effectively dashed Royals' hopes of qualifying for the play-offs, Dravid confessed that it was a disappointing performance. "We did not play well and we did not bat well. A total of 150-plus would have been very competitive on this wicket. But that was not to be," he said.
"Yes, we would have loved to go back to Jaipur by winning this game and play the last one with the hope of qualifying for the next phase. Unfortunately, it did not happen. That is life," said a poignant Dravid.
"I think overall we surprised quite a lot of people with our performance this season. There have been many positives for our team," he said to a query.
"Definitely, it has been a very emotional two months for me with this team with which I was so busy, interacting with the players. Enjoyed terrific support from franchisee," Dravid observed. "May be, after the last game once I go back home and then experience what it means to be a retired cricketer. Then, realise that I have no job to do," he said with a smile. "I have not given a thought about my plans on the next edition of IPL. Still a long way to go," he added.