Jaywant Lele, known for blunt views and depth of experience in cricket administration, felt that Sachin Tendulkar came across as an indecisive captain for India due to his inability to complete formal education before plunging into a cricket career.
The ex-BCCI secretary and a part of the team management on numerous international tours also ruled out Indian cricketers' involvement with match-fixing, during a question-answer session following the launch of his book titled I Was There — Memoirs of a Cricket Administrator published by Marine Sports.
He said: “The game has seen great players, not all turn into good captains. Tendulkar was still in school when picked for India. I believe education plays a role in captaincy. He also has a tendency to listen to too many people, so was indecisive as captain.”
The ex-BCCI secretary is emphatic about Indian cricketers not involved in match-fixing or betting.
“I cannot talk about other countries, but Indian players are not involved,” said Lele, stressing that no evidence has been unearthed in the investigations so far to withstand legal scrutiny.
“For more than a century, on one hand we believed that cricket is a game of glorious uncertainties and on the other hand, we are quickly tempted to conclude match-fixing when things go against our expectations.”
Lele explains: “The fact remains, if two or three players decide, they can at the most contribute in defeating their side. But if all players in a side decide to fix a match for victory, they may or may not succeed, depending purely on cricket skills and match performances. So the possibility of match-fixing can at the most be one-sided.”
Former India captain Borde, Ajit Wadekar and ex-India national coach Anshuman Gaekwad spoke about experiences with Lele as an administrator and ability to get things done as a tough-talking tour official.