Vijay Mallya made it clear that he was not happy with the squad, currently languishing at the bottom of the IPL points table, which has been ridiculed as a Test team in Twenty20 jersey. He revealed that he was on a collision course with Captain Rahul Dravid and CEO Charu Sharma over players’ selection for the Indian Premier League. The liquor baron and the Chairman of Kingfisher Airlines said that he had some players in mind but Dravid and Sharma completely ignored them and went ahead with their own plan.
Vijay Malya said, “I had my own list (of players) but the fact is Rahul Dravid and Charu Sharma had their own list and at the end of the day, I decided to take the back seat. I was very tempted to bid for players whom I wanted but they held me back. Obviously things have turned out differently. When Rahul Dravid was not present in the second auction, I wanted to acquire some players but Charu Sharma was very tentative about them. I mean I bought Misbah-ul Haq because I was determined to do it. There were other players I was discouraged about.
“Charu Sharma was appointed CEO because I thought he understood cricket and he would add value to the team and the entire Royal Challengers initiative. When I was questioning the performance of the team, all I was told was that practice facilities are bad, then I was told there was no bonding in the team…so everything was blamed on a particular event or lack of infrastructure.
“So I said to myself things can’t continue like this and I brought Brijesh Patel. He is the honorable secretary of the KSCA (Karnataka State Cricket Association) and who better a person to provide match facilities and whatever else the team needs at its base in Bangalore. He understands cricket as well.
“At the end of the day, people need to understand that the IPL has a corporate side to it, and a very definitive corporate side. It is not at all cricket in the traditional sense. I want from Rahul Dravid to do the best for the team and to produce some good results for us because I don’t think Rahul Dravid enjoys being at the bottom of the league tables, and certainly I don’t.”