Apart from being a stylish all-rounder during his playing days for India, Ravi Shastri is known as the former head coach of India. During his tenure, India became a force to reckon with in the Test format. However, they failed to replicate the same glory in the other two formats.
India lost the 50-over World Cup in 2019 and the last edition of the T20 World Cup in 2021. Even, though they lost the first ever final at the World Test Championship to New Zealand in 2021. Now, Ravi Shastri came up with an allegation against the Indian selectors for those twin World Cup setbacks during his timeline as the coach.
“We told the selectors, ‘look for someone.’ But then, who is there?” – Ravi Shastri
Speaking on Fancode, Shastri said the lack of a genuine all-rounder in the Indian team cost them those two World Cups. He also blamed that the selectors were nowhere to help them while they asked for a replacement for injured all-rounder Hardik Pandya. He said: “I have always wanted a guy who could bowl in top-6. And with Hardik getting injured, it became a massive problem. And it cost India. It cost India a couple of World Cups. Because we didn’t have anyone who could bowl in the top six. So, that was a liability. We told the selectors, ‘look for someone.’ But then, who is there?”
However, the importance of having Hardik Pandya in the line-up can not be denied after his stellar comeback from the injury earlier this year in the Indian T20 League. He made an instant impact by winning that tournament as a leader for the Gujarat franchise. Then, he won a T20I series against Ireland while leading India. He also won the player of the series award in the three-match ODI series against England.
Currently, India is busy playing a three-match ODI series against West Indies while Hardik Pandya has been given rest in this series. He will be back in action in the upcoming five-match T20I series, starting on 29 July 2022.