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I had to give back to the game and nation: Ravi Shastri

Former India skipper Ravi Shastri talks to mid-day on being appointed as Team Director till 2015 World Cup; chief coach Duncan Fletcher to be Down Under as well

Ravi Shastri will make yet another tour of Australia, the country in which he was adjudged Champion of Champions for this sterling efforts in the 1985 World Championship of Cricket.

Ravi Shastri
Team Director Ravi Shastri with MS Dhoni during India's tour of England recently. Pic/Getty Images.

This time though his challenge is greater because as Team Director, he has to held defend India’s World Cup title.

Yesterday, the Indian cricket board decided to extend Shastri’s role till the end of the World Cup. Although Shastri’s fine work during the limited overs series in England provided good reason for his extension, a lot depended on him to take up the role and let his television commentary become secondary.

“I gave it a lot of thought before giving them (BCCI) the green signal. After all, the World Cup is a big assignment,” Shastri said yesterday.

He added: “I had to sacrifice my commentary and it would be impossible to handle both (commentary and being with the team) but I think you have to give back to the game, nation and your cricket board.”

The BCCI working committee also decided to continue with chief coach Duncan Fletcher till the World Cup. Fletcher coached England during the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies where his team ended up with disastrous results.
Sanjay Bangar, Bharath Arun and R Sridhar will continue to be part of the Indian support staff.

Shastri appeared excited to return to Australia. “As a cricketer, I have done reasonably well there and how can I forget the 1985 World Championship of Cricket? I am telling myself that I will do this for my country and Board.”

Laxman to deliver Pataudi lecture

Former India batting stalwart VVS Laxman will deliver the third Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi Memorial Lecture on October 18 in Kolkata.

VVS Laxman
VVS Laxman

It is learnt that the Cricket Association of Bengal requested the BCCI to allow them to host the Lecture to coincide with the 150th anniversary celebrations of the Eden Gardens. Sunil Gavaskar and Anil Kumble delivered the first and second Lectures respectively.

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