Indian team director Ravi Shastri has clarified that the 10-day break which the Indian cricketers got when failed to qualify for the finals of the Carlton Mid Tri-series helped them in getting their batteries recharged and this development eventually brought out their best in the ongoing 2015 Cricket World Cup.
It is worthwhile to note that the Team India, led by MS Dhoni, has already registered two commendable wins over Pakistan and South Africa in the most prestigious event so far. Shastri also opined that the players were never really concerned about their poor form prior to the World Cup and always carried confidence of delivering at the big stage at the right moment.
He said, “Nothing’s changed. I think what they desperately needed was a break. That ten-day rest they got after the triangular series was a massive bonus because the kind of cricket they had played in the one month of Test cricket was very, very draining. People don’t realize the intensity with which India played. With a little bit of luck, the series could have been 1-1. And it’s not often you play four Test matches in a month. And then straightaway, the triangular series after that didn’t help.”
He added, “Unfortunately, it was there in the itinerary so you had to go through the motions, which we literally did. But the break was tremendous because it was mental fatigue more than physical fatigue that was creeping in. That’s why that break was very timely. As for the stuff said and written, the beauty is the boys don’t read and think about the nonsense. It is for people to say that there is nonsense written, they are not even bothered one bit because they know how well they have played in Australia. It’s just a case of being up and ready for the big occasion, and they have started off extremely well”.
Regarding the comeback of Shikhar Dhawan, against whom a lot of negative apprehensions got circulated due to his inconsistent batting in the recent away tour in Australia, Shastri emphasized that the management had never lost faith in capabilities of Dhawan and were pretty sure of his generating runs in the given moment.
He said, “Shikhar was due. It was a matter of time before he hurt somebody because he was playing well – but one edge and he was gone. It was not that he was getting out for 2, 3, 4. He was getting 30s, 40s, and then getting out. It was just a matter of time before he converted one knock into a big one and took it from there. Even against Pakistan, with a little bit of luck, he could have got a hundred there, he was run out. He could have had two hundreds in two games. But he struck it beautifully, he is a dominating player and not for one minute was there a doubt in anybody’s mind about his form.”
However, apart from non performance of few of the batsmen regularly, the other prime concern for one and all was poor and ineffective bowling attack of Team India. It appears that like other millions of the Indian supporters, Shastri too was a bit surprised the way they have made a mark recently.
He exclaimed, “A pleasant surprise, and that’s why teams should watch out because anyone taking this bowling unit lightly, it is at their own peril. What sometimes upsets you is when other people have three fast bowlers, other teams, and they bowl at 140 and bowl like how India does, they are a great bowling team. But when Indians bowl at 140 and do it like that, nothing. No one mentions it. So it’s time they got something back. They should have been given credit for their performances. They have been dishing it out, and doing it collectively Underliniug the strengty of the Indiam bowling attack and coordination. It is not one guy performing. It is being backed, creating pressure, bowling in tandem together, bowling well in tandem. Not just the pacers, I think (R) Ashwin and Jaddu (Ravindra Jadeja) have done a fabulous job as well. Seeing the way the ball is coming out of Ash’s hand is very promising”.