Ravi Shastri – Team India head coach, on Monday, said he is confident that Virat Kohli and his Team will rewrite the history books by winning Tests in South Africa next month.
As per IANS, Ravi Shastri told reporters, “Nothing changes the way we approach any other match. For us all opposition is the same, all oppositions have to be respected and every game is a home match. And as it turned out that next, we are in South Africa. Where South Africa is different is that we haven't won a series in South Africa. Therein lies a massive opportunity for the team to do something special.”
He further added, “The belief is there. We are going there and we will treat South Africa like we treat any other opposition we have played against. There will be respect but we will go there to win.”
India head coach also lashed out at critics who have questioned MS Dhoni's form and his place in the limited overs squad. Former India captain further stated, “We are not stupid. I have been watching this sport for the last 30-40 years. We know, at this age, he (Dhoni) can beat players aged 26. People who talk forget that they played the game. If they look at themselves in the mirror and ask the question 'what they were at the age of 36?', would they have run two runs faster? But the time they finish two, this guy will run three. Then he has won only two World Cups and averages only 51. Till today you don't have a wicket-keeper to replace him in the one-day team.”
While praising Dhoni, Shastri said he is still one of the best around, not only in the Indian team but the world and he can play till 2019 World Cup, adding, “Some of the things you see with him are not sold in the market. You will not get it anywhere else. The fact that he does not play Test cricket, means he should be playing as much cricket as possible till the World Cup in 2019.”
On being asked about Virat Kohli's captaincy, Shastri replied, “The great thing about Virat is his work ethic, his realisation of what kind of player he can become and what he it takes to become that player. So the emphasis on fitness, the sacrifices that he has to put through. A lot of things he wants to do as a 29-year-old. And it has become part of his lifestyle.”
He concluded by saying, “What happens is, that when you have a captain in that frame of mind, wanting to achieve things others can only dream of. Then it rubs off on other players. Others want to emulate him. He wants to raise the bar for himself and he doesn't want any room for excuses.”