Former India head coach Ravi Shastri was critical of India’s fielding against Australia during their first of three T20I meetings in Mohali. The 60-year-old, who is currently part of the Star Sports broadcast team for the bilateral series, shared his thoughts on-air post match.
“If you look at all the top Indian teams over the years, there is youth and experience. I find the youth missing here and hence the fielding. If you look at the last five-six years, fielding wise, I think this side is no match to any of the top sides when it comes to fielding. And that can hit badly in big tournaments,” Shastri said.
In their defence of 209 runs in Mohali, India dropped three catches. Two of Cameroon Green, who went on to score 61 off 30 deliveries and one off Matthew Wade, who was unbeaten at 45 off 21 deliveries. The instances ultimately came back to haunt the hosts as Australia won the match with four wickets in hand.
Shastri elucidated how dropped catches pile up further pressure on the batters in the team, who have to make up for the same with more runs.
“It means that as a batting side you have to get that 15-20 runs game after game, because if you look around the field, where is brilliance? There is no Jadeja. Where is that X-factor?” he said.
“What I was disappointed today with was the standard of fielding. I mean, it looks sloppy and I think you need a big upping of the ante when it comes to the fielding if you have to beat big sides in big competitions.”
India and Australia will now meet in Nagpur for the second T20I on Friday, September 23.