“To be rolled over for 36 and three days later to get up and be ready to punch back was outstanding. I think the boys showed real character,” Shastri said while speaking to the media after the end of the second Test match that ended in the second session on the fourth day…reports Asian Lite News
India coach Ravi Shastri termed the win over Australia in the second Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Tuesday as one of the greatest comebacks ‘in the history of the game’.
Asked where he would place this week’s MCG win which has come in the absence of regular India skipper Virat Kohli and injury to key India fast bowlers Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma as well as Umesh Yadav (in the second innings), the India coach said this win deserves a place in the annals of cricket history.
“I think this will go down in the annals of Indian cricket, world cricket as one of the ‘Great Comebacks’ in the history of the game.
“To be rolled over for 36 and three days later to get up and be ready to punch back was outstanding.
“I think the boys showed real character,” Shastri said while speaking to the media after the end of the second Test match that ended in the second session on the fourth day.
“When we arrived in Melbourne…. we discussed what we had to do to get up and fight,” added Shastri.
“We had a lot of positives at Adelaide. But at the end of the day, it is the result that counts. We were blown away in the second innings in one hour. When you are blown away, you are blown away, there is nothing you can do about it. But to get up and fight, which we did in this second Test, to beat a team like Australia in Australia… there is no point having one good day in Australia, you got to have five good days if you have to beat them,” added Shastri.
Coach Ravi Shastri also added that captain Ajinkya Rahane is a very shrewd, calm leader and has a good understanding of the game.
Shastri also termed Rahane’s first-innings knock of 112 as the turning point of the match.
“He is a very shrewd leader, he has a good understanding of the game and is a good reader of the game. I thought his calm composure out there in the middle helped the debutants — Mohammed Siraj and Shubman Gill — in the middle and helped the bowlers as well.
“There was a calming influence and inspite of losing Umesh, I thought we did a great job,” said Shastri.
The 58-year-old former India all-rounder compared Rahane to Kohli, saying that though both are good readers of the game they are different in nature.
“Both are good readers of the game. Virat is very passionate while Ajinkya on the other hand is very calm and composed. It is their characters… Virat is more in your face while Rahane is prepared to sit back in a very calm and composed manner but deep inside he knows what he wants,” Shastri said.
Shastri called Rahane’s knock as the one that turned the match in India’s favour.
“I think it was the innings of Ajinkya Rahane,” said Shastri when asked about the turning point of the match.
“The discipline he showed on such a big stage in such a massive arena, to come as captain of the team, bat at No. 4.
“When he went to bat we were two down for 60-odd and then to bat six hours on probably the toughest day to bat… because it was overcast all day, the sun never came out and he batted for six hours, unbelievable concentration. I thought that was the turning point. His innings was the turning point,” added Shastri.
Australia skipper Tim Paine said that noot enough runs on the board and dropping a number of catches led to Australia’s eight-wicket defeat in the second Test match.
Paine also credited the India bowlers saying they have been extremely disciplined and are executing the plans better than the Aussie batsmen have been.
“India are bowling well. They have been extremely disciplined. We haven’t really been able to get partnerships together. But from what I have seen watching Marnus and Steve Smith, this is not the first time. teams have targetted their stumps. That happens every single Test match. Having said that these guys are executing it better. Someone like Steve in particular hasn’t been able to get in yet. Once he gets in, he will find a way as he always does, the rest will follow suit and need to,” said Paine while speaking to the media on Tuesday.