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Indian cricket needs my services, it's the nation's call: Ravi Shastri

Newly-appointed Team Director of India Ravi Shastri can't wait to take charge

Q. When did the BCCI contact you?
A. They spoke to me yesterday (Monday). I was a bit surprised. Star Sports were kind enough to grant me the go ahead. I am honoured and this is a new challenge for me. I told the Board that I have a television commentary contract and if they (Star) agree I have no problems.

Ravi Shastri. Pic/AFP
Ravi Shastri. Pic/AFP 

Q. Why do you always have to bail out Indian cricket? In 2007, you came on board after a disastrous World Cup…
A. Whatever I am, it is because of BCCI and India. If Indian cricket needs my services, I have to respond. It's the nation's call.

Q. When will you join the team?
A. On Saturday. Sanjay Bangar, B Arun (assistant coaches) and R Sridhar (fielding coach) will arrive by Friday. We'll get to work immediately. I had a chat with Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Duncan Fletcher over lunch today and we discussed some things.

Q. The team have fared very poorly…
A. My only concern is that I saw India's best overseas victory in the second Test at Lord's and in the next 20 days, we lost three Test matches. I have been asked to find out what went wrong and I will send my report to the BCCI.

Q. We now have a situation where, from a fully foreign support staff, we have a pack which is mostly Indian…
A. Well, Duncan Fletcher will still be there - that's what I understand from the BCCI.

Q. There are some superstars in the Indian team. Will they listen to the likes of Bangar, Arun and Sridhar?
A. They will have to. They (the trio) have not come on their own. It is the BCCI that has given them the responsibility.

Q. Why is your role as Team Director only restricted to the limited overs series in England?
A. I told them (BCCI) that commentary is my first love so let me try things out. We'll see what happens.

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