‘IPL is great opportunity, but first-class cricket more important’
Gautam Gambhir has praised the IPL for improving young cricketers' temperament to play under pressure, but emphasised that performance in first-class cricket should be the yardstick to judge them.
"I feel if you really want to see a young talent, you should see him in first-class cricket and your first-class cricket should be given more importance than IPL," he said. "People in India consider IPL bigger than first-class cricket but I think the first-class cricket of any country should be far more important than the IPL because in the T20 format it is very difficult to judge a young batsman."
Gambhir's reasoning is that IPL does not offer as stern a test on technique and the extensive churn in personnel of an IPL team.
"It is going to be unfair because there are going to be times when there are not going to be enough opportunities for a young talent.
"Obviously, IPL is a great opportunity. When you play at this stage and under this pressure you end up getting your temperament right. Your mental toughness can be tested in this tournament, but your actual technique can be tested only in first-class cricket."
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