Cricket legend Kapil Dev made a hard-hitting remark on players who have complained about being tired because of playing too much cricket. The former India captain was present at an event in Delhi where he was asked a question about the complaints of some cricketers that their workload is too much. He suggested that those cricketers take a break during Indian Premier League (IPL).
The exact reply which Kapil Dev gave was: "If you think there is burnout, then don't play IPL. I mean that's not representing your country. If you think you are burned out then you can obviously take a break during the IPL."
The 1983 World Cup-winning captain accepted that there are strong financial motives to playing in the IPL and they are justified also. Still, he said the country should always get preference over playing for a franchise team.
"IPL gives you exposure. And I don't want to see anybody's pocket (hurt), what (money) they are making. I think when you represent your country, it should be a different feeling. It can't be that you have more feeling for club cricket and not for the country," Dev asserted.
This debate over club vs country is almost a decade old. At different times, Indian cricketers have been blamed for giving preference to playing for their IPL sides over national duty. In 2011, this issue came to a head when the Indian opener in both Tests and ODIs, Gautam Gambhir seemed visibly hurt during an IPL game but continued playing.
But later, when India were scheduled to tour West Indies, he pulled out of it. This led to allegations that he put playing for his IPL side above national duty. The charge was strongly rebutted by Gambhir. But the matter didn't end there.
During India's disastrous tour of England later in the year, Nasser Hussain asked whether Sachin Tendulkar could have taken a break during IPL to play the Test series in West Indies to prepare for England's tour.
However, this year, there is another great incentive for top Indian players to take part in the massively popular league. With the World T20 just months away, IPL will provide a great opportunity to them for honing their skills in the shortest form of the game. Even missing an international engagement for this experience might be a price worth paying.
Coming back to Kapil Dev, he also talked about his experience of feeling tired due to too much cricket. He did say, though, that good performances take away your tiredness.
"Yes, I felt (burnt out) so many times. When you bowl series after series without much success... You are never burnt out when you are scoring runs or taking wickets. When you take 7 wickets and bowl 25-30 overs a day, you're never tired. But when you go for 80 runs in 10 overs and don't pick up a wicket, you are very tired. So, it's an emotional thing too," the legend informed the media.