Indian team head coach Ravi Shastri believes that the coronavirus-induced lockdown was harder on the Indian players when compared to their Australian counterparts. He pointed out that the restrictions were much harder in India, making it impossible for the players to get out of their homes.
The 58-year-old remarked that life inside the home was “extremely torturous”, especially in the big cities where there wouldn’t be enough open spaces.
Ravi Shastri told Times of India:
“If you remember the lockdown in India, nobody could move out. Barring players who were lucky to be in smaller towns, with large houses, who could've had access to private open areas. But in cities like Mumbai, Delhi - everybody was locked inside their houses or apartments. It was extremely torturous.”
The players in the Indian team could not play any competitive cricket for nearly six months. The Indian Premier League (IPL) was the only tournament that most of them played before the Australia tour.
In contrast, the restrictions were relaxed in Australia, and their players were allowed to use grounds for training. The Australian side had also toured England for a white-ball series earlier in the summer.
“They (Australian side) landed up in England for the white-ball series and there was exposure. Whereas, until we landed here, it was only the IPL that allowed our players to enter the field.”
Three-day game will give pink-ball experience to the Indian team, believes Ravi Shastri
Ravi Shastri also believes that the three-day match at the Sydney Cricket Ground will give a much-needed experience to the Indian team to see what the pink ball does. He said:
“The three-day game (warm-up) is a good thing to happen. It'll give our players an opportunity to experience it and see what happens with the ball at what times. That's the crucial bit. It's new to everybody. We haven't really played anything much (with the pink ball).”
The day & night Test at Adelaide will be the Indian team’s second-ever pink-ball match. The first one was played against Bangladesh last year at Eden Gardens.