Consultants do have a role — recent cricketing story
For cricket lovers, India v Bangladesh T20 World Cup game will remain in memories for long. Viewers of the game will remember Dhoni’s captaincy, last ball run-out, Pandya’s last 3 decisive deliveries, Ashwin’s man of the match performance, and few other things.
I haven’t seen anyone commenting on Ashish Nehra, one of the senior most member of the Indian squad. However if someone reads the reaction of MS Dhoni just when the team was about to leave ground as a victorious team, he hugged Nehra. Dhoni is one man who rarely expresses his emotions, but the manner in which he hugged Nehra tells a different story.
If someone is to recall the last two overs, it looked like Nehra was playing the role of a vice captain. He was seen with the bowler and with the captain. Even Dhoni walked upto Nehra for discussions and game plan.
One may have questions — why so? Nehra hasn’t been an outstanding performer. He bowled well, but not great. But then there is something called experience. Nehra may not have bowled the final over (if — given a chance) like what Pandya did, but the experience that Nehra has, can certainly be a great help to the relative new comer, Pandya. Having a seasoned bowler in the side doubles up for a role of on-ground coach — a role played really well by the unsung hero — Nehra.
Even in the ESPNCricinfo article on Dhoni’s last ball plan, the same reference of discussions between Dhoni and Nehra comes up.
To me, Nehra played the role of a true Consultant. That guiding force who understands the resources (his team members) and their strengths and weaknesses, besides understanding the competitive landscape (the opposition team). For Dhoni, Nehra was that consultant. It is natural that the viewers will remember Dhoni and Pandya, but captain cool Dhoni knows the role played by everyone, including Nehra (what is not so obvious to most of the viewers).
Nehra, the consultant used his experience, become the communicator between the captain and executor, did the on-ground mentoring, and played an invisible role in the success of the Indian team. Viewer attention will always be on the executor or the captain — but — consultants do have a role.
I repeat — Consultants do have a role.