VVS Laxman, who has scripted quite a few memorable victories for India in red-ball cricket, has said that team work is more important than the individual brilliance to win a Test series especially in overseas conditions.
Speaking at the launch of his autobiography 281 & Beyond, Laxman said: “It boils down to getting used to the conditions as quickly as you can. Based on that you devise your game plan and make subtle technical adjustments which will allow you to perform well in those conditions. To win a Test series, the batting group in the first innings has to perform. They should get par score or 50 runs more than that.”
Sharing his success experience in the adverse overseas conditions, VVS further added: "Whenever we have enjoyed success in overseas conditions, the batting unit always played to its potential. Then we had bowlers who were so talented and skilful that once we gave them runs on the board they had the ability to take those 20 wickets and bowl out the opposition. I always feel there is a recipe to perform and win overseas. You can't depend on one or two contributors whether in the bowling or batting department. To win a series, you have to have contributions from 6 or 8 players in a squad of 15."
Legendary India batsman Rahul Dravid, who was also there at the book launch, echoed Laxman’s viewpoint adding that Test series are predominantly win by the bowlers.
“I think series are won by bowlers. They win you matches. Even though (Javagal) Srinath likes to call them labour class, the reality is they are the most important people in winning Test matches because they need to get you those 20 wickets. (Currently) we have a good bowling attack. In a series you need a lot more people to contribute in critical moments,” Dravid remarked.
Commenting on Team India’s current bench strength, Laxman credited Dravid for developing the youngsters at the India ‘A’ and U-19 level.
"The Indian team is good because of its bench strength. You have options in every department and what Rahul has contributed as India 'A' and India U-19 coach is immense. The players are fortunate to spend so much time with a legend like Rahul, who with his work ethics can still inspire them. To be successful in international cricket you have to be mentally strong and their time with Rahul is a boon for them," VVS asserted.
Dravid in turn complimented Laxman for his role in mentoring players in Sunrisers Hyderabad – the franchise which has the majority of players in the India ‘A’ team.
(With TOI inputs)