India vs England, 5th Test: Ravi Shastri’s big statement on Rahul Dravid

Former India head coach Ravi Shastri praised his successor and former batsman Rahul Dravid, saying that he is the best person to have taken over from him as the head coach of the national team. After Shastri’s reign as head coach ended after the Men’s T20 World Cup last year, Dravid succeeded him for the job in November 2021 and is currently with the team in the ongoing Edgbaston Test.

“There is no better person after me than Rahul. I got the job (of head coach) by mistake which I told Rahul. I was in the commentary box, I was asked to go there and I did my job. But Rahul There is a guy who has come through the system, he has worked hard. He has been the coach of the under-19 team and he has handled this Indian team and I think when the team starts reacting to that he will have to work hard. Will enjoy it. Says,” Shastri said in conversation with Nasser Hussain and Michael Atherton on Sky Sports.

Under Shastri’s reign, India extended their overseas record in Test cricket, winning the Border-Gavaskar Trophy twice in Australia in 2018/19 and 2020/21, besides leading the team 2-1 in the series against England. taken to new heights. Test cricket is also at the top of the rankings.

“I think it was very rewarding, it can be a thankless job because you are judged by only 1.4 billion (people) every day of your life. There is no hiding from this, nothing to hide behind. You face the bullet, performance matters day in day out. You have to win.”

“Expectations are high, but the way the boys responded, when I look at my tenure, when I was there, those seven years, I am proud that I had a team that responded in the same way. When I , they weren’t playing the best cricket as they would the rankings show but at the end of it, they were there in all formats of the game,” Shastri said with a smile.

While India were at the peak of their development in Test cricket, the same was not repeated in white-ball cricket, unable to register an ICC trophy against their name, the best runner-up position in the inaugural World Test Championship final in 2021. ,

“If anything, he didn’t win the World Cup in that tenure of mine, but otherwise put on some amazing performances in red-ball cricket and white-ball cricket in different countries around the world. But those two back-to-back series wins. In Australia. He is definitely the icing on the cake, leading the series in England last year.”

“The team took pride in playing red-ball cricket, for that Virat (Kohli) should be praised. He led from the front, he wanted to play in that style, the fast bowlers replied. You players in that era With time, Jadeja, Rishabh Pant, Shubman Gill came through the ranks; players of the class and a lot of them still are,” Shastri said.

Shastri further explained how the Indian team began to transform itself into winning overseas Tests consistently. “I started at the age of 18. By the time I was 21, I was playing for India and the skin was thick like anything. Nothing surprised me and it helped me when I was India’s coach because nothing bothered you. The last thing I worried was about the media. If the boys performed, the media would react as they wished. If you don’t do well, they have to crush you. Right and if you do well, you will be praised.”

“Our job was very simple, what the media didn’t like about Indian cricket was the fact that we were rascals at home and we didn’t play great cricket when we were abroad. So working with the team proved to be a good thing for me. Had to do it. They got it wrong. So, how are you going to do it? You sit with the team, you sit with Virat and say we’re going to take 20 wickets. As simple as that, take the pitch out of the equation Take it out.”

“Both teams play on the same surface. You make your 250-275, then try to get 20 sticks. That’s how you’re going to win the game. What’s the need for a combination now? You need fast bowlers because You can’t live on a spin diet and expect to win overseas; you can’t get the pitch for that. So, horse to the courses, get 20 wickets with fast bowlers, find the right combinations and fight back. Keep your stomach for it,” concluded the former India all-rounder.