India vs Australia: 'This team doesn't fire blanks,' says coach Ravi Shastri after landmark series win in Sydney

India coach Ravi Shastri hit back at the critics, including the legendary Sunil Gavaskar, who had questioned selections and the training regimen of the team.

Press Trust of India, Jan 07, 2019 13:56:27 IST

Sydney: India coach Ravi Shastri on Monday used his tried and trusted ammunition to attack the critics, saying negative comments coming from miles away were blown away by the wind like, what else, but a "tracer bullet".

Moments after India's maiden Test series triumph in Australia, Shastri hit back at the critics, including the legendary Sunil Gavaskar, who had questioned selections and the training regimen of the team.

India's coach Ravi Shastri also rated the series win over Australia over the 1983 World Cup triumph. AP

India's coach Ravi Shastri also rated the series win over Australia over the 1983 World Cup triumph. AP

"I said in Melbourne — I think I mentioned people taking potshots and firing blanks. I wasn't joking there, because I knew how hard this team had worked. When you fire from there, by the time it crosses the southern hemisphere, it's blown away by the wind like a tracer bullet," Shastri told reporters after the 2-1 Test series triumph over Australia, India's first in 71 years.

The former all-rounder was alluding to Gavaskar's comments made on air during the fourth day's play on Sunday.

After fellow panelist Murali Karthik called the Perth defeat a wake-up call, Gavaskar had said, "And how did that wake up call come? Because of the blanks being fired from thousands of miles away. The blanks made the noise that woke this team up!"

Having achieved as a coach what no other Indian team has in 71 years, it was Shastri's turn to respond.

Continuing his tirade, he said, "...But lead, with something in it, can be pretty serious. And that's what we have fired right through the series against Australia. We were committed, and it jolly well bloody made a difference at the end of it all. This is not a team of gods or demigods, seniors or juniors."

Further, Shastri rated the series win over the 1983 World Cup triumph.

"I will tell you how satisfying this is for me. World Cup 1983, World Championship 1985...this is as big or even bigger because this is in the truest format of the game, that is Test cricket," he said.

Shastri lavished rich praise on his players after they wrote a new chapter in the Indian cricket history.

"This is an Indian cricket team that will jump over a cliff to win a match for the country. And that's the determination, that's the ruthlessness, that's the mindset with which this team went to play in this series. Hats off to them for showing that courage."

He was not done there, considering the enormity of the achievement at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

"Today I can say I am proud of my boys and I can also tell them one thing, which Virat touched in the presentation, that this team now has an identity to look at any other Indian team from the past in the eye and say 'We play proper Test match cricket. You did, we did too, but without being intimidated'," Shastri signed off.

Updated Date: Jan 07, 2019 20:48:03 IST


IPL 2019 POINTS TABLE

Pos. Team P W L D Pts.
1
Mumbai
14 9 5 0 18
2
Chennai
14 9 5 0 18
3
Delhi
14 9 5 0 18
4
Hyderabad
14 6 8 0 12
5
Kolkata
14 6 8 0 12
6
Punjab
14 6 8 0 12
7
Rajasthan
14 5 8 0 11
8
Bangalore
14 5 8 0 11
See Full Table





Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
6 Sri Lanka 3462 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 5372 125
2 India 5669 121
3 South Africa 4488 115
4 New Zealand 3729 113
5 Australia 4342 109
6 Pakistan 3846 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
6 New Zealand 4056 254