From his own experience of working with the Team Indian, Ravi Shastri has remarked that he had to develop a thick skin to counter a ‘jealous’ gang of people during his tenure. Shastri made the comment to the Guardian while advising Robert Key, who was recently appointed ECB’s ‘Director of Cricket’.
Ravi Shastri has always been straightforward whenever he speaks about something or whenever he goes to opine about someone. He got the limelight once again, recently while speaking to the English Newspaper Guardian. The former Indian head coach was asked what would be his advice to Robert Key, who was recently appointed England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) ‘Director of Cricket.’
In response, Shastri said that Robert must grow a ‘thick skin’ to tackle a bunch of people who want the ex-England opener to fail at his new role. He further added that he did the same as well, during his tenure as head coach of the Team India between 2014 and 2021.
“I didn’t have coaching badges [either]. Level one? Level two? F**k that. And in a country like India, there is always jealousy or a gang of people willing you to fail. I had a thick skin, thicker than the leather of the Dukes ball you use. A real solid hide,” Shastri was quoted as saying by Guardian.
“And you need a bloody hide over here. Rob will develop this as he does the job because every day you are judged. And I am glad he has a lot of captaincy experience from his time at Kent because communication with the players is absolutely paramount.”
Further, Shastri, from his own experience, opined that all national cricket boards work quite similarly. “Rob may have more work with the domestic game but, when it comes to the national team, it is very similar. The most important thing is getting among the players and setting a tone from the outset: what you believe in, what you think of them and changing the mindset to compete and win.
“You have to be bullish and brutish in wanting to achieve that. For us, and now England, it was about setting the challenge of winning abroad, big time. I was very firm when it came to team culture: all the prima donnas and all that shit, that had to go out of the window early,” he added.