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‘Had Shastri Been the Coach With Kohli as Captain, Indian Team Chaand Tak Pahunch Jaati’: Ex-Pakistan Captain

Curated By: Aakash Biswas

Last Updated: August 17, 2023, 07:48 IST

Virat Kohli (L) and Ravi Shastri (R)

Virat Kohli (L) and Ravi Shastri (R)

Former Pakistan captain Rashid Latif pointed out the frequent experiments done by the team management and said shuffling players and captains too often has left India in a muddle

Former Pakistan captain Rashid Latif has made a strong statement on India’s current position in world cricket. He believes that ever since Ravi Shastri left the team as head coach and Rahul Dravid came at the helm, the team has been struggling to find the right balance, especially in white-ball games.

As big tournaments like Asia Cup 2023 and ICC World Cup 2023 are approaching, the Indian team is still mulling over finding the perfect combination. And Rashid says that it’s all happening because the management never gave a new face enough chance to get settled.

A few days ago, captain Rohit Sharma spoke about the No.4 dilemma that has been persisting since the exit of legendary Yuvraj Singh. A lack of a strong batting option in that spot has affected the overall performance of the Indian middle-order and ahead of the aforementioned big events, India seem clueless.

Recently the team management experimented with its bench strength in West Indies and tried some options, in Sanju Samson and Axar Patel, by resting the likes of Virat and Rohit. The outcomes were average and didn’t seem to be solving the problem at all.

Rashid pointed out the frequent experiments done by the team and said shuffling players and captains too often has left India in a muddle. Speaking on YouTube channel called Cricket Baaz with Waheed Khan, Latif said if the pair of Kohli and Shastri had continued, the team would have done wonders.

“Ravi Shastri’s tenure was outstanding. Virat Kohli was dominating at that time and the way they introduced players resembled (Sourav) Ganguly’s style of leading the team. Speaking of Rahul Dravid, he can be a great Test coach but the skipper he needed was Kohli. They speak of not getting a No. 4 batter. But the thing is, they have not allowed any new player to settle down,” Latif said

“Another mistake was naming too many captains at a time. There was (Mohammed) Azharuddin, followed by Ganguly and then Dravid came in for some time and then (MS) Dhoni and then Virat. So, it was a legacy going on but now, they have a new captain for every format.

“Had Ravi Shastri continued as a coach with Kohli as the captain, ye team Chaand tak pahunch jaati,” he added.

The former Pakistan wicketkeeper-batter highlighted what happened with Shikhar Dhawan in the past 12 months. Despite leading the side on multiple occasions, the veteran batter no longer exists in India’s scheme of things for the World Cup 2023.

“They have displaced Shikhar Dhawan, someone who used to perform brilliantly in pressure situations in ICC events. But you let him go which was a big mistake. He captained India last year and now he is nowhere in the scene,” Rashid said.

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