Dravid disappointed by IPL ban verdict

India

Former India batsman and Rajasthan Royals mentor Rahul Dravid says he feels most sorry for players and staff at the franchise, after the team, along with Chennai Super Kings, were banned for two years for corruption.

The ROyals were banned after three of their players were caught up in spot fixing two years ago, including former India bowler Sreesanth, and Dravid is not worried for his own future, but rather those at the club year-round.

Dravid, now India's A-team coach, said: "I don't want to make firm judgments on people, but it's disappointing that the actions of one or two can have an impact on so many.

"Not only me, but generally in a situation like this, the people at the bottom of the pyramid are the ones who are most affected.

"The top players and coaches always find stuff to do afterwards. It's not difficult for top players to be picked by other franchises. However, the young players who don't easily get an opportunity, they miss out.

"I feel disappointed for them, but we respect the decision the court has taken. In my opinion, not everyone at Rajasthan Royals or Chennai Super Kings are bad. There are lots of very, very good people."  

Dravid also said he truly had no idea that three of his players had been involved in spot fixing two years ago, and said that he would have reported any such activity had he known about it.

He added: "At the end of the day, I see my role as a mentor and as a coach of a team. People need to decide if the actions of shareholders or owners can be linked to coaches or mentors.

"I don't want to try and defend myself. I only wish I had known that the three players were doing something suspicious, as I would have dealt with it.

"People know what spot-fixing is. It's difficult to know, even if in same team, if people are involved in spot-fixing. If I were to doubt every single wide or four, I would lose all my love and interest in the game.

"Any team I coach, I don't go into it suspecting people every time they get hit for a four. I had absolutely no clue, and I've spoken to the Mudgal commission about that.

"What people do in their private lives, I personally feel it's difficult for mentors and coaches to know what decisions they are making."

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