Home > News >

India-Australia on-field rivalry brings out best cricket: Ravi Shastri

India and Australia have been a part of some riveting contests, over the years © Getty Images
India and Australia have been a part of some riveting contests, over the years © Getty Images

Mumbai: Jun 12, 2014

Former all-rounder Ravi Shastri was of the opinion that tough battles against Australia in the early stages of an Indian cricketer’s career have made them tough for stern Tests ahead. The cricketer-turned-commentator also placed the intense on-field rivalry between India and Australia just a rung below that India-Pakistan duel.

He was speaking at a function here last evening organised by the Australian Trade Commission to elicit business around the ICC 2015 World Cup which the country is co-hosting with Trans-Tasman neighbours New Zealand.

“I studied in English convent school so English manners were pretty good, but [I thought] enough of England. You wanted to get out to Australia perform in their zone, play hard, play fair and play to win and to do that you got to be hard yourself,” he said.

“One thing about Australia, they will hag you, give you enough on the cricket field, but if you can stand up and play and get runs there’s mutual respect which helped me a lot right from my young age. After that when you went on to play West Indies, went on to play the strongest teams with the best pace attack in the world you were not intimidated. You were up for a fight, you wanted to compete.

“You go and ask the young team of the ’90s who really learnt how to fight and compete, the Gangulys, the Dravids, the Tendulkars. They were that era of players. It happened because of Australia,” said Shastri.

“India-Pak is the fabric, but outside that it’s India-Australia (rivalry which brings out the) best cricket. The following that India-Aus cricket has is unmatched because of the competition, if you forget India-Pakistan that goes a long way back.”

Former Australia pacer Shaun Tait, who played for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL, agreed with Shastri and said the current lot of Indian players were not afraid of anyone, which may have been the case earlier.

“It might have been the case years ago. These guys started touring Australia and learnt to play different kind of cricket. Ravi talked about the Rahuls, Sachins and Souravs and when my turn came not a long time ago in playing them, the Indians were pretty tough,” Tait said.

Tait, who is to get married today to an Indian girl here, said the wickets and hot conditions made bowling fast on the benign tracks in this country and gave the example of Zaheer Khan when asked why India was not producing fast bowlers similar to him who was once clocked close to 160 kph.

“Australia are big people in general and we always had fast bowlers because of the size. These bowlers bowl on pretty flat wickets here in extremely hot conditions. It’s not easy for fast bowlers to bowl in India especially for long periods of time.

“I had spoken to Zaheer Khan last night and he spoke to me about how he used to bowl at 150 kph in his younger age. Because he had to bowl so much on these wickets and conditions he got tired and had to rely on his line and length. The coaches are getting smarter in India and not bowling their guys into the ground here,” Tait said.

As an example of India-Australia connect in cricket, Rajasthan Royals CEO Raghu Iyer pointed out that one of the investors in his franchise was media baron Rupert Murdoch’s son Lachlan.

“Rupert Murdoch’s son Lachlan has invested in our company. I can also say about our recent tie up with Deakin University as sports education partner and interestingly it came up in one of the networking of Australian Trade Commission events. As Ravi stated, India-Australia connect is really big outside of India-Pak,” Iyer said.

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 20, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Kolkata

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Dubai

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (19:00 IST)   at Cuttack

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 24, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Mount Maunganui

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Dhaka

More

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 21, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 6 wkts

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 17, 2014  at Dharamsala

India won by 59 runs

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 14, 2014  at Visakhapatnam

Match cancelled

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 12, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Australia won by 1 run

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 11, 2014  at Delhi

India won by 48 runs

Photos

New Zealand vs South Africa, 1st ODI

Videos

Australia perpare for 1st Test against Pakistan

Pakistan’s chances in ICC World Cup 2015 bleak: Mohammad Zahid

Pakistan vs Australia 1st Test in Dubai Preview: Motivated Pakistan look to hurt rusty Australia

MS Dhoni rested, Virat Kohli as captain, and other points of interest from squad for first 3 India vs Sri Lanka ODIs

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: MS Dhoni gets much-needed break ahead of Australia tour

A Pakistan all-time XI: A galaxy of captains

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 India India vs West Indies India vs West Indies 2014 New Zealand Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Africa West Indies West Indies tour of India 2014 West Indies vs India 2014

Loughborough becomes latest ICC-accredited testing centre

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Younis Khan’s ton takes Pakistan to 219/4 on Day 1

Shahid Afridi wins it for his team in an exhibition match for displaced at Bannu

Younis Khan becomes 12th batsman with a ton against each of the Test-playing nations

Younis Khan equals Inzamam-ul-Haq with 25 Test tons

Younis Khan becomes 12th batsman with a ton against each of the Test-playing nations

Steve O’Keefe and other Test cricketers with apostrophes in their surnames

Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Geoff Marsh and other Father-Son trios to have played Test cricket

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Why did Mohammad Hafeez go for a shocking review?

Australia’s best opportunity to bury ghosts of playing on spinning track

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

642 Posts | 9 Fans

Virat Kohli's Family Meets Anushka Sharma

Revealed: Aamir Khan’s alien avatar in PK- View pic!

Latest Moto 360 software update brings battery saving feature and mood lighting

Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone at the Dubai press conference for Happy New Year-view pic!

Kill Dil song G Phaad Ke: Govinda steals Saif Ali Khan’s thunder

इबोला से संक्रमित अमेरिकी फोटोग्राफर विषाणु मुक्त घोषित

इबोला : अंतर्राष्ट्रीय लड़ाई में क्यूबा का साथ देगा अमेरिका

Novak Djokovic names new-born son Stefan

Lenovo RocStar music-focused Android KitKat smartphone with Dolby Digital Plus audio launched in India, priced at Rs 6,499

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here