Ravi Shastri, who has been re-appointed as the head coach of Indian team for a second time on the trot, has insisted that he is ready to embrace and relish new challenges ahead and aims to help the Men in Blue build a legacy which can be emulated by other teams in the time to come.
Notably, the three-member Committee of Administrators (CAC) comprising Kapil Dev, Anshuman Gayakwad and Shantha Rangaswamy, on Friday reappointed Shastri as the head coach till the 2021 World T20.
Speaking to BCCI.TV after his re-appointment, Shastri — who is currently in the West Indies — extended gratitude to the CAC for reposing their faith on him.
“First I would like to thank the CAC for having faith in me. It’s a privilege and honour to be part of Team India,” said Shastri.
“The reason why I came in here is the belief I had in this team, the belief that they could leave a legacy which very few teams have left behind which other teams going down will try and emulate.
Meanwhile, Shastri said that there is always room for improvement and was excited with youth coming around. The Indian head coach also emphasized that he, alongwith the team, would be striving to improve on all fronts and make sure they learn from mistakes.
“You’ve got to learn from your mistakes, nobody is perfect. When you strive for excellence and strive to raise the bar then you have to pay attention to detail,” he said.
The 57-year-old Indian all-rounder, who was Team India director between 2014 and 2016, was appointed the head coach after Anil Kumble’s resignation following the 2017 Champions Trophy where India lost to Pakistan in the final.
Under the reign of Shastri, India won 13 out of 21 Tests, 43 out of 60 ODIs and 25 out of 36 T20Is.
It is to note that under Shastri, India recorded their first-ever Test series win in Australia in 2019. The Men in Blue also registered their first-ever bilateral ODI series win in South Africa last year (5-1).
However, Team India got out of the 2019 World Cup in the semi-final after finishing top of the table in the league stages.
“The team has been superbly consistent. If you look at the performances over the last two years, it’s been simply outstanding. They have set the bar and it’s now upto them to raise the bar,” said Shastri.
He also made it clear that the team management would not shy away from experimenting. “We will invest in youth and there is room for experimentation.”
Just like former India skipper MS Dhoni, Shastri also wants to see the team being termed as the best fielding side in the world.
“In the last four-five years, the biggest improvement has been in fielding. And the endeavour is to make this side the best fielding team in the world,” he said.
“It’s a clear dictate to whosoever wants to play in this team to have spectacular standard of fielding, especially in white-ball cricket,” he added.
The Team India head coach also said that by the end of this tenure, he wants to see a smooth transition taking place with the set-up.
“Next two years is to see the smooth transition happening. You will get a lot of youngsters coming — in both white-ball setup and Tests. You need to identify another three-four bowlers to add to the pool by the end of our tenure. My endeavour by the end of this tenure would be to leave the team in a happier space so that they can set a legacy in the time to come,” he signed off.
(With inputs from IANS)