'There's no shortcut to success'

Veteran talks

'There's no shortcut to success'

Former Indian captain turned commentator, Ravi Shastri’s sharp-witted comments and one-liners have always kept cricket buffs entertained. His association with the Indian cricket team is variegated — from team coach to a mentor, he has chipped in for the team in more ways than one.

Presently the commentator for the ongoing IPL season, Ravi feels that the format has given a whole new dimension to cricket and cannot be written off. In an interview with Nina C George, he shares his undying love for the game.

What is the most memorable moment in your career?

Undoubtedly, the World Cup memory is difficult to beat — both as a player when we won the World Cup in 1983 and as a broadcaster when M S Dhoni shot for a six and I happened to be on the microphone. These two memories will top the list forever.

What do think about the IPL format of cricket?

I think the T20 format was much needed for the game of cricket to evolve. It has done well to get new people into the stadium. I would like to call the IPL a different beast altogether because the crowd that comes in for the IPL is not the same as the one that comes in for Test matches.

What are the challenges involved in your job?

The challenge is to keep the spirits among the spectators high. People come to watch an IPL for entertainment which they get in plenty.

There are many who think that the IPL has diluted the spirit of the game of cricket. Do you agree?

Those who are criticising the IPL are wasting their time. The format has provided young and aspiring cricketers with a great opportunity to prove their worth. There are many young players who see this as a stepping stone to something bigger.

What is your advice to the young players?

I tell young players that there’s no shortcut to success. Young players have to stay focussed and disciplined and put in hard work to get to the top.

How do manage to keep your spirits high?

I treat everyday with respect. I turn up to work thinking that I am going to carry on from where I left. I make efforts to understand that every game is different and the crowd is also equally different.

What keeps you going?

My passion for cricket. The sport has given me everything.

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