Not bothered by India’s surprise loss to Sri Lanka in the first T20, Team Director Ravi Shastri maintained that the “endeavour” is to try out various combinations by giving everyone opportunities ahead of the big-ticket World Twenty20 next month. Rattled by an inexperienced Sri Lankan side on a green wicket in the first match at Pune, India would aim to regain their winning touch and keep the three-match series alive when they take on the island nation in the second Twenty20 cricket international on February 12 in skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s home ground Ranchi.
“Ideal scenario would be to give most of the guys who are part of the World Cup squad a run. That will be the endeavour but you will have to see what the conditions are, what the state of the series is and accordingly decide,” Shastri said at the pre-match press conference. The former captain said he is focussed on the World T20 and not thinking about the possibility of becoming a full time coach of the Indian team.
“I don’t know. We have time till World Cup we will see after that,” Shastri said when he was asked about the full time coaching job, adding, “As I had said time and time again we live in the present. Focus should be till the World Cup. We are employed by BCCI and they will judge the performance. My job is to take care of the Indian team.”
Asked about the criticism of the pitch following the first game, he said, “If the pitch is good we say it’s good. If the pitch does a lot we will say, it does a lot. Why should we be scared of saying what we feel? It’s very clear that it did a little too much but we should have adapted well. “No excuses for losing the match but we should have scored 140, it would have been a good competitive score on that surface.” He felt consistency is not a problem with the current team.