'Rahul Dravid absorbed more pressure than Sachin Tendulkar'

Mar 15, 2017, 13:26 IST | Subodh Mayure

The book, written by India batsman-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra with Jaideep Varma, contains 61 hidden cricket stories that highlight the impact performances of international players

Zaheer Khan (left), Aakash Chopra and Harsha Bhogle during a book launch at Kemps Corner yesterday. Pic/Suresh KarkeraZaheer Khan (left), Aakash Chopra and Harsha Bhogle during a book launch at Kemps Corner yesterday. Pic/Suresh Karkera 

Former India pacer Zaheer Khan and cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle released the book, 'Impact Index, Numbers Do Lie' at a South Mumbai bookshop yesterday.

The book, written by India batsman-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra with Jaideep Varma, contains 61 hidden cricket stories that highlight the impact performances of international players. However, page 32 focuses on two legendary batsmen — Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid — who were discussed at yesterday's book launch.

"In terms of Test cricket, rated ahead of him (Tendulkar) is Rahul Dravid. In the 1990s, when Sachin was just the lone ranger, nobody was supporting him. If I have to put it this way, Sachin never had Rahul to support him to win matches, but Rahul always had Sachin to support him to win matches," said Chopra.

"Rahul absorbed more pressure because batting at No. 3 and No. 4 are two different things. So Rahul was invariably batting at 10 for one and had Viru (Sehwag) for company. By the time Sachin came in it's just that the pressure was not the same all the time. Also, Rahul's overseas performances have been the clincher," Chopra added.

Though Team India was known for its Fab Four in the batting department in the 2000s, this book rates speedster Zaheer Khan as the player who made the most impact in the Indian team.

"In the 85-year-old history of Indian Test cricket, the highest impact bowler in overseas conditions for India is Zaheer Khan. Between 2007 and 2012, you (Zaheer) were the second highest impact and the second-most consistent fast bowler in the world after Dale Steyn," Varma told Zaheer.

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