With VVS Laxman becoming India’s interim head coach for New Zealand for the New Zealand tour in place of Rahul Dravid and Ravi Shastri has questioned the decision of Team India’s coaching staff to be granted frequent breaks. This is not the first time that the Dravid-led department will not be around as Laxman oversaw proceedings when India toured Zimbabwe. Shastri, who when as a coach, was active pretty much the entire time irrespective of whichever team played, is not in favor of Dravid’s constant breaks.
In fact, one of the reasons why Ravi Shastri decided not to continue as India’s head coach for another term is because it required him to be on the road all the time. Talking about the same, as per the quotes in Hindustan Times, Ravi Shastri said, “I do not believe is breaks. Because I want to understand my team, I want to understand my players and I want to then, be in control of that team.”
He further added, “These breaks… what do you need that many breaks for to be honest? You get your 2-3 months of the IPL, that’s enough for you to rest as a coach. But other times, I think a coach should be hands on, whoever he is.”
Hrishikesh Kanitkar and Sairaj Bahutule will fill in for Vikram Rathour and Paras Mhambrey as the team’s batting and bowling coach respectively. Dravid will be coming back to his duties when India leaves for Bangladesh for ODI and Test series, along with Rathour and Mhambrey starting December 4.
Ravi Shastri was however in agreement with a crucial point raised by VVS Laxman during the pre-match press conference: that India’s T20 future will be headlined more by a current lot of youngsters. Laxman agreed that in limited-overs cricket, specialist cricketers are the need of the hour and in T20 cricket, multi-dimensional cricketers are as valuable as gold dust.
Talking about the same, Ravi Shastri said, “I think that is the way forward. VVS is right. They will identify the specialists, especially with youngsters because going forward, that should be the mantra. Two years from now, identify and make that Indian team into a terrific fielding side and of course identify roles for these youngsters who could be fearless. And go out there and play that kind of cricket without any baggage whatsoever.”
He further explained, “There is an opportunity with this team in the future to identify match winners and duties, and going pretty much on the template of England. Because they are one team that really caught the bull by its horns after the 2016 World Cup. India have got a wealth of resources and I think it can start now from this tour. Because when you look at this team, it’s a fresh, young side… you can identify, groom and take this team ahead in two years’ time.”