India fielding coach R Sridhar has revealed what the head coach Ravi Shastri told the crestfallen team after the batting-unit had succumbed to a historic low during the second innings of the pink-ball Test at the Adelaide Oval.
19 December 2020 will always be remembered as one of the black-lettered days in the history of Indian cricket as it was a day where the team registered its lowest-ever total (9-36) in its history.
Despite having dominated for a better part of two days in Adelaide, it all fell away for Team India
India lost the Test match in a humiliating manner and with a barrage of criticism that came their way in its immediate aftermath, the side could have easily fallen away.
But this is where the man-management skills of Ravi Shastri came to the fore. According to R Sridhar, a day after the shambolic defeat, Shastri gatherer the entire team and urged them to wear 36 like a badge of honor.
The rest, as they say, is history, as the Men in Blue, despite being bruised, battered, and humiliated, scripted a comeback for the ages under the inspired leadership of stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane.
The Rahane-led unit turned the tables on Australia, a week later when they routed the hosts by eight wickets in the Boxing Day Test to level the rubber 1-1.
The tourists then proceeded to pull out a draw for the ages in Sydney to ensure that we went into the final Test with the series locked at 1-1.
Then in Brisbane, the ultimate miracle happened as a heavily depleted Team India shocked the Aussies to not only chase down a record fourth-innings total of 328 at the venue but also breach the fortress after a period of 33 years to clinch their second consecutive Test series win Down Under.
“After 36 all-out, you didn’t know what’s next. Then Ravi (Shastri) bhai gathered the team and said: ‘Wear this 36 like a badge on your sleeves and you will be a great team’,” R Sridhar told news agency PTI.