India tour of England: Ravi Shastri, who was the head coach of the Indian cricket team last year, took on the role of the commentator for the Birmingham Test, which marks the conclusion of the incomplete series from last year.
Ravi Shastri was not overseeing India’s batting show from the Edgbaston dressing room for the rescheduled 5th Test but he was in the commentary box at the iconic dressing, calling the much-anticipated finale of the incomplete series from last year.
Ravi Shastri returned to English commentary for the first time post his head coach stint with the Indian cricket team. Shastri returned to commentary during IPL 2022 and he was part of the Hindi broadcast team.
Shastri had arrived in the UK earlier this month. The former India all-rounder shared photos with legendary Pakistan fast bowler Wasim Akram earlier this week from their meeting at the Lord’s in London.
Shastri was an influential figure in India’s success in England last year, marshaling the troops from the dressing room. The head coach combined wonderfully well with then captain Virat Kohli as India bounced back from their defeat in Nottingham to hammer England in Oval to take a 2-1 lead before the final Test, scheduled to be played in Manchester in September last year, was postponed due to Covid-19 scare in the Indian camp.
In fact, Shastri was not with the team in the 4th Test at the Oval as he had tested positive for Covid-19. India battled against England and clinched an emphatic victory on the final with their coaching staff members only discussing plans with them before and after a day’s play.
Shastri was dressed in a dark blue blazer as the former India head coach was looking dapper when he did the pre-match analysis in the Birmingham Test.
A lot has changed in both the camps from last year’s series as Shastri was replaced by legendary Rahul Dravid as India’s head coach. Virat Kohli, who lead India to 2-1 lead last year, stepped down as India’s Test captain earlier this year. Rohit Sharma took over as the skipper across all formats earlier this year but the Mumbai batter missed out on the finale due to Covid-19. Rohit was the top scorer for India last year, scoring 368 runs in 4 Tests.
On the other hand, Joe Root, who led England last year, has been replaced by Ben Stokes while Brendon McCullum replaced Chris Silverwood, who was sacked as head coach earlier this year.
Jasprit Bumrah led India for the first time as the fast-bowler became only the 2nd pacer after Kapil Dev to lead India in Test cricket. Bumrah was not lucky at the toss as Stokes won the toss and opted to bowl on an overcast morning in Birmingham.