The eagerly anticipated fifth Test of the five-match series between India and England has started. India is up 2-1 in the series, and the fifth game was pushed back to a later time because of the Covid-19 problem.
Veteran Indian pacer Ishant Sharma recalled the incident and said that it was a stressful period when then-Team India head coach Ravi Shastri caught the virus following the launch of his book in England.
Sharma recalled an instance in the locker room when Shastri was struggling to even talk. Sharma was speaking to sports presenter Jatin Sapru.
We Did Not Know At That Time If Ravi Bhai Was Infected With Covid: Ishant Sharma
“We all were pretty scared during that time. I clearly remember, during the Oval Test, Ravi Bhai was in the dressing room and he was not able to talk properly. There was his book launch and we thought he had caught a cold because things were normal in England at that time.
“He was also looking normal it was just that he was not able to talk properly. Bharat Arun looked all right and even R Sridhar was totally fine. Then we got to know through Rapid Antigen Test that the three of them were positive. Actually, we were scared at that time,” Sharma told Jatin Sapru.
Yogesh Parmar, a junior physio, tested positive before the fifth Test in Manchester, while Shastri, fielding coach R Sridhar, bowling coach Bharath Arun, and physio Nitin Patel tested positive for Covid during the Oval Test.
Speaking about the 5th Test Sharma said, “I think the Indian team would have prepared well for the 5th Test against England. The Indian team had left for England on June 15 and they had 15 days to prepare during which they also played a practice match. We have played in Edgbaston before so we have some idea.
“As far as the wicket is concerned, you don’t get an idea till the time you bowl the first delivery. Everybody is aware of the conditions in England. All of them are experienced and know their roles. Preparation-wise, I am sure everybody will be ready.”
Sharma was part of the Indian squad last year but he is not with the team for the last Test.