Rohit Sharma India vs Australia
Rohit Sharma. File photo: BCCI.

India vs Australia | 'Rubbish': Rohit responds to 'outsider' Shastri's comment

Former coach Ravi Shastri’s assertion that the Indian team lost in Indore due to “overconfidence” has been termed “rubbish” by skipper Rohit Sharma, who minced no words while calling him an “outsider”.

Shastri, who was the Indian team’s head coach for six out of seven years from 2014, wouldn’t be too amused to find out how it feels when the shoe is on the other foot.

“This is what a little complacency, a little bit of overconfidence can do where you take things for granted, you drop guard and this game will bring you down,” Shastri had said on air while doing commentary for Star Sports after India lost by nine wickets to Australia on a rank turner.

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Skipper Rohit, in the last 18 months has maintained his calm, composure and dignity but when asked about their ex-head coach’s assessment on the third Test, he sounded very firm.

“Honestly, when you win two games and people on the outside feel that we are overconfident, it’s absolutely rubbish because you want to do your best in all four games,” Rohit said on the eve of the fourth and final Test.

“You don’t want to stop by winning two games. It is as simple as that. Obviously, all these guys, when they talk about being overconfident and all and especially when they are not part of the dressing room, they do not know what sort of talk happens in the dressing room,” Rohit said something that was his predecessor Virat Kohli’s standard comment about people on the “outside”.

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Rohit’s sharp retort was for someone who till recently was this team’s tactical policymaker and its biggest official cheerleader.

“We want to do best in all games and if it seems overconfident, or anything like that for outsiders, it doesn’t really matter to us,” Rohit said on Monday.

Maybe Rohit was a bit cross with the fact that Shastri knows how the system works and could have been a bit more empathetic in his choice of words.

“Because Ravi has been himself in this dressing room and he knows what sort of mindset we have when we play,” Rohit said.

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To many, it is about misplaced confidence but for the Indian skipper, it is ruthlessness.

“So yeah, it’s about being ruthless and not being overconfident. Ruthless is the word that comes to every cricketer’s mind, not to give an inch to the opposition when they are touring abroad.

“We have also experienced that when we have toured outside, the opposition will never let you come into the game or series, and that is the mindset we have as well,” he added.

(With agency inputs)

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