Coach Buchanan says Ganguly controversy ‘not team issue’


Mohali (Punjab) : Kolkata Knightriders team coach John Buchanan Friday washed his hands off the on-field controversy surrounding beleaguered team captain Sourav Ganguly, saying that it was “not a team issue”.

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Talking to reporters here on the eve of his side’s crucial tie against Mohali team Kings XI Punjab after suffering three straight losses in as many games, Buchanan said that the on-field controversy involving Ganguly and Rajasthan Royals skipper Shane Warne in the game at Jaipur Thursday had been put behind.

“This is not a team issue. I suppose it has been discussed by the IPL officials. We have moved beyond that (incident). We want to concentrate on our cricket and win the game Saturday,” Buchanan, who was earlier Australia’s coach, said.

Ganguly, who should have normally addressed the media briefing, stayed away and did not speak to presspersons at all upon the team’s arrival here from Jaipur.

Warne had Thursday accused Ganguly of going over board in disputing his dismissal and forcing the Indian umpire to call for a third umpire decision. Warne used harsh words against Ganguly, saying that the former Indian captain violated the spirit of the game and resorted to old tactics of wasting time by keeping the other team waiting.

Ganguly retaliated, saying that Warne had no business to comment on him given his own (Warne’s) past controversial cricketing record.

“I don’t see any great value in extending the conversation on this issue,” Buchanan said when pestered about the Ganguly-Warne controversy.

Defending Ganguly on captaincy issues after Knightriders’ bowler Umar Gul criticized Ganguly’s leading ability, Buchanan said that everyone in the side was getting familiar with the T20 format.

“We are all learning about the T20. This (IPL) is a fantastic tournament. The controversies should play a smaller role and only cricket should dominate,” Buchanan said.

The Knightriders coach said that the team had adequate replacement for Ricky Ponting and New Zealander Brendon McCullum for future matches.

Meanwhile, Mohali team, Kings XI Punjab, coach Tom Moody said his team was not concerned about the controversies and problems being faced by the Kolkata team.

“We have won three games in a row after the first two losses. We want to keep the momentum going. We are getting better but there is still room for improvement,” Moody said here.

Kings XI Punjab face Kolkata Knightriders in a T20 match here Saturday evening.