Team India head coach Ravi Shastri and captain Virat Kohli were criticized heavily by fans and experts on social media after the fifth, and final Test between England and India in Manchester was called off due to Covid-19 fear in the Indian camp.
The threat came only a few days after Shastri, among others, tested positive for coronavirus after the touring party attended a book launch in London last week.
Following that public event, apart from Shastri, India’s bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach R Sridhar also returned positive tests while team physio Nitin Patel was kept in isolation.
While Kohli didn’t contract the disease, the English cricket lovers who were eagerly waiting for the last match of this summer, where the tourists were 2-1 up, directed their anger and displeasure over the cancellation of the Manchester Test towards Indian coach and skipper for their irresponsible visit at a book launch event.
As per reports, even the BCCI was unhappy with Shastri and Kohli’s outing for a book launch. However, in the recent turn of events, Shastri has responded to the allegations put against him and added that the whole of the UK is now open, and anything could have happened right from the first Test in Nottingham.
“The whole country [United Kingdom] is open. Anything could have happened from Test One,” said Shastri in an interview to mid-day on Sunday.
Instead of talking about the ‘cancelled’ fifth Test, Shastri focused on Team India’s performance in the recently-concluded series.
“It’s been the best summer of cricket England has seen in a long time certainly from an Indian cricket team. It’s Covid times, awesome summer though. The boys were fantastic either side of the Thames,” added Shastri.
“No team played in Covid times like this Indian team did in Australia and England. Just ask the experts here. Nothing has given me more job satisfaction in the game and I have been around for a bit as you would know.”
Shastri’s next assignment with Kohli & Co. will be the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 in the UAE from October 17 to November 14.
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