In the contest between Punjab and Rajasthan, Punjab’s captain Ravi Ashwin mankaded Rajasthan’s Jos Buttler that left the entire cricketing world separated with a few supporting the decision and a few talking against it.
Now, the former Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid talked about the incident to Times of India. Here’s what he had to say:
“I think some of the reactions were overblown. Questioning Ashwin’s character because he did that is totally wrong. He has every right to his view. You might not agree with it, but it was well within his rights to do it and that does not make him a bad person,” Dravid told the Times of India on Wednesday.
He added that Ashwin was well within rights but if it was him, he would have given the player a warning.
“I don’t have a problem with someone deciding to do it. Ashwin was well within his rights to do what he did. However, personally, I would prefer it if somebody warns someone first. That would be my personal choice, but I respect someone’s view to think differently. I might not agree with it necessarily, but I would just have to agree to disagree whether someone should run someone out without warning him,” he explained.
The veteran says that Ashwin hasn’t cheated anybody and he is not a bad person either.
“It is not about being a gentleman or a non-gentleman. This is not a judgement on his character, but his reading of the law. He has not cheated anybody, nor is he a bad person because he did that.”
He added that it’s a player’s personal choice.
“The interpretation of sportsman spirit is different for different people and I don’t think we need to go into that. You can decide how you want to be. It’s a player’s personal choice. The toughest thing for Ashwin and his coach in Kings XI is that an issue like these can sometimes polarise opinion,” he said.
“Among the players and support staff, there might be some who feel he could have done things differently and that becomes difficult for the captain and coach going forward.”
Asked if how he would have reacted if he was the coach.
“When I coach teams, I suggest and I use the word suggest, to players that if they feel someone is trying to get an undue advantage, then please warn him and if he continues to do that, you can maybe do that (Mankaded).
“But then people don’t have to agree with me. There is nothing in the laws that say you have to warn. He (Ashwin) has read the law in a particular way. You can agree to disagree with him, but you cannot question his character, this is wrong.”
While a lot of people voted against Mankading, Dravid wants the law to stay.
“I don’t see any other way. Tomorrow if you don’t have the law, you can have somebody standing five feet outside the crease. So how do you make sure that someone doesn’t take advantage? The law is there for a reason and how you choose to use it is a tricky one,” he said.