‘Maybe the incentive is not there anymore’


India batting great Rahul Dravid feels the impact of T20 cricket could have contributed to their batting collapse as they lost to Sri Lanka in the first Test in Galle on Saturday.

Sri Lanka bowled their visitors out for just 112 as they defended a target of 176. India were undone by spin in the as left-arm spinner Rangana Herath took seven wickets while right-arm spinner Tharindu Kaushal snapped up the other wickets to fall.

Dravid, who played in 164 Tests and was a master at playing spin bowling, thinks the current India batting is talented and skilful enough to deal with any sort of conditions.

The current India A coach, Dravid told the Indian Express: "This is a generation of cricketers which has grown up watching and playing T20, probably the first such generation.

"They are very talented and very skillful players, but they need to negotiate difficult conditions, whether it is spin or pace, seam or swing. It's an art which needs to be practiced, learnt and valued.

"I think the values of singles had diminished because most these players play T20."

The former right-handed batsman also spoke of how maybe the incentive to be a successful Test cricketer had diminished but taking pride in your personal performance was key.

Dravid explained: "To be a successful Test cricketer was our primary focus then. Now you can easily make a living without being a Test cricketer.

"Maybe the incentive is not there anymore. Then it boils down to personal pride, getting satisfaction in succeeding in all and the most difficult of conditions."

The second Test of the three-match series starts in Colombo on Thursday.