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Is Duncan Fletcher responsible for India's dismal performance?
Duncan Fletcher was appointed as the coach of Team India in April 2011, only after Gary Kirsten left the job - winning the 2011 ICC cricket World Cup. It was Kirsten's farewell gift to Indian cricket. But, the Indian team has not enjoyed a good run after Fletcher took the charge.

THE INDIAN team suffered huge and embarrassing defeats at the hands of the Australian and the English teams in the Test series abroad last year. In the ODIs as well, India lost the NatWest Series in 2011, Commonwealth Bank series in 2011-12, the Asia cup and the most recent ODI series loss against Pakistan as well. Victories have come very rarely for the Indian team. The only wins have come against weaker oppositions such as New Zealand, West Indies etc.

Such results are bound to face criticism from Indian fans and experts likewise. Dilip Vengsarkar, a former Indian cricketer and a selector has been one of the biggest critics of Fletcher. He had openly stated in one of the interviews to The Telegraph that the coach should be sacked from his job. Recently, in yet another instance he has also stated Fletcher is a below average coach. He has not been able to bring good results for the Indian team, which was not the case with England, with whom he was a successful coach.

It is understood when some former players want him to be sacked but the current crop of Indian players also does not seem to be happy with Fletcher as a coach. This calls for a change in the Indian cricket team coach. Last month it was reported that some Indian players met the BCCI and expressed their displeasure with their coach. They even went on to the extent of stating that Fletcher was of no help to the Indian team. It is the same Indian team players, which held Gary Kirsten in great esteem and also gave credit to Kirsten for India's success.

When one looks about Fletcher's contribution, it is very hard to figure out any positive points and speak positively for Fletcher. He has not been able to help the Indian players and sort out their problems. India's inability to handle swing bowling has been a major problem and it has not changed ever after his one and half years stint with the Indian team. His primary responsibility would have been to make the player learn from their mistakes that they execute on the ground. But, that does not seem to be happening. India has been losing most of the matches abroad. Indian batting overall has seen a downward slide.

In spite of all these, the Indian captain, MS Dhoni supports Duncan Fletcher and does not want to blame the coach for the debacle; instead he puts the blame on the Indian players. There is some valid argument for this case – a team is as good as his players. But, to counter MS Dhoni, one can add and say, but for how long can you blame the players? The coach plays an important role in changing the attitude of the players by providing encouragement.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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