Gary Kirsten, the former coach under whom India won the 2011 World Cup has appreciated the work ethic of Sachin Tendulkar, calling him the easiest cricketer he’s had to work with. Kirsten admitted that serving as coach of the Indian cricket team between 2008 and 2011 remains one of the most cherished memories of his career and revealed he saw tremendous promise in a young Virat Kohli during his coaching tenure.
“Sachin (Tendulkar) was easy to work with because he has such a strong value system as a person. Virat (Kohli) was potentially a great player in 2011 and he is one of the greatest now,” Kirsten told Times of India.
“I loved coaching the Indian team. It was one of the best privileges of my life. It was a fantastic journey with the players and very fond memories of the World Cup. There were a lot of expectations from the players to win the World Cup and they handled it incredibly well.
Weighing in on MS Dhoni’s future, Kirsten reckons the former India captain is best suited to know when it’s his time to walk away. Dhoni’s future is a topic that hasn’t died down since he went on a sabbatical following India’s World Cup loss last year. Many former and current cricketers, pundits feel it perhaps is too late for Dhoni to return to the Indian team, indirectly hinting that the former India captain might be done with cricket. However, Kirsten feels the decision is best left with Dhoni and no one else.
“MS (Dhoni) is an incredible cricketer. Intelligence, calmness, power, athleticism, speed and a match-winner separate him from others and puts him amongst the greatest sportsmen in the modern era,” Kirsten said. “He (Dhoni) has earned the right to leave the game on his own terms and no one should dictate to him when that time is.”