Former England captain and now one of the most popular Cricket commentators, Nasser Hussain has heaped praises on Sourav Ganguly for transforming the character of team India from being a bunch of nice guys to one of the toughest opponents on the cricketing field.
Former England captain Nasser Hussain gave credit to his old on-field rival Sourav Ganguly for changing the attitude and the way other teams were looking at team India. Hussain believes the Indian team was ‘nice’ before Sourav Ganguly took over the captaincy and he made them ‘tough’ during the reign of his leadership tenure. Ganguly took charge of the Indian team during a troubled phase of Indian Cricket, immediately after the match-fixing fiasco but proven himself to be one of the most successful captains India had ever produced. He had the most –win-lose percentage as a captain until he remained in charge of the team.
Nasser Hussain and Sourav Ganguly had many memorable encounters on the field and who can forget that unforgettable Natwest Trophy final between the two countries in the year 2002. England had set India a formidable total on 325 runs to win the Natwest Trophy and Team India was struggling at 146/5 with most of its superstars like Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, and Rahul Dravid being back in the pavilion. But youngsters Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif had other ideas and their partnership was instrumental in India winning the match in the end.
Nasser Hussain was engaged in a chat with fellow cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle on Cricbuzz and Hussain wholeheartedly praised Sourav Ganguly who is now the chairman of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, for his astute leadership skills and for changing the way other teams used to look at team India.
“Before Sourav, India was a nice team, great players, Azhar, Javagal Srinath, they had some fantastic players, but before Sourav, they were a nice team. Very sort of ‘good morning, how you doing’, you know a bit like you Harsha to be honest (light-hearted tone), very nice (and) pleasant. Ganguly made them a tough team,” Hussain said.
Ganguly captained team India in 146 ODIs and 49 Tests and team India won 76 ODIs and 21 Tests out of that. He was the most successful Indian captain ever but later his record was broken by MS Dhoni and now Virat Kohli has surpassed Dhoni to become India’s most successful Test captain.
When asked about who Hussain thinks is the best captain going around in Cricket currently, Hussain picked Eoin Morgan as his best white-ball captain and he opted for Kane Williamson over Virat Kohli as his favorite captain in the longer version of the game.
Hussain said he didn’t pick Eoin Morgan just because he led England to their first ever 50-over World Cup win last year but he believes Morgan’s calmness in pressure-cooker situations makes him the stand-out captain among his competitors.
“In red-ball cricket, there are so many boxes to be ticked. I think the way Kohli has driven India, you know their fitness, change in culture, and their winning mentality is all down to Kohli.
“But if you’re asking me who is my favorite, and one of the reasons you give, ambassador of the game… Kane Williamson is just… for the resources New Zealand have, their record at home, I mean India found out recently, England found out, their record at home is phenomenal.
“My best white-ball captain would be Eoin Morgan, not just because he won the World Cup, but he is calm, whenever there is chaos. White ball cricket is now chaos. The batsmen now smash everyone, everywhere. My favorite white-ball captain, the best white-ball captain would be Morgan,” Hussain said.