An injury-plagued Team India defeated Australia 2-1 and once again returned home with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, earlier this week. Since then, the Indian players involved in the historic triumph have been recalling some astonishing moments which turned the series in their side’s favour.
Having said that, R Ashwin, who missed the fourth and final Test due to back issues, shared a funny anecdote, during a chat with fielding coach R Sridhar. Ashwin hilariously imitated head coach Ravi Shastri to reveal how the former all-rounder plotted Steve Smith’s dismissal in the second Test in Melbourne.
Smith had a poor start to the series, mainly due to Ashwin outsmarting him in Adelaide and Melbourne as well. Ashwin, in a video uploaded on his YouTube channel, narrated the whole episode to Sridhar.
“After we lost the toss, Shastri came to me and said “ashhhh”. I was wearing my pant and suddenly taken aback! I said yes Ravi Bhai. He raged in typical style ‘get the ball in the first 10 overs’.
“I was like get the ball in the first 10 overs in Melbourne? He said “I’ve told Jinx, it’s damp and might spin’. As he said, I got the ball early… and the ball spun immediately. I was like wow, what’s happening!'” said Ashwin.
Ravi Shastri was clapping furiously: R Sridhar
Sridhar also recalled: “We were sitting in the coaches’ box. The three of us were sitting with Hari, the analyst. Ravi Bhai came in and roared ‘I have told Jinks to bring Ash on early. He has the mental edge over Smith.”
“The ball will surely do something. It’s a red ball, not a pink ball. I’m waiting. I want to see him bowl inside the 40th minute’. And he was clapping furiously,” Sridhar added.
“And then when you (Ashwin) got the ball in your hand, the bowling coach was super excited. He was like, ‘Something is going to happen now’. Ashwin’s first ball itself fizzed and bounced; my heart was beating fast,” Sridhar further revealed.
“My first thought was ‘Oh dear, how is Rishabh Pant going to keep to Ashwin on this wicket’. He was under pressure, was playing his first game. So that was running on my mind, I wanted to tell him to stand 2-3 inches behind. I called Saha and told him my thoughts immediately. I was hoping we’ll get 4 wickets before lunch,” he added.