'Asked the boys to get mentally tough'

Ravi Shastri. AFP

India head coach Ravi Shastri extolled his lads for injecting fresh life into the series but refused to get carried away with the emphatic win, saying the road to redemption has just begun.

Excerpts from his post-match media interaction at Trent Bridge on Wednesday.

On Wednesday’s win: In the four years I’ve been doing this job, I think if you look at a clinical performance overseas, this has to be the best. Because South Africa was gutsy, because that was a nasty track when you won in Johannesburg. But this was clinical. When you look at all three departments, they stood up — as a batting unit, as a catching unit and as a bowling unit. So you can’t ask for more.

On the mood in dressing room now: See we’ve won just a Test match, there’s still a series to be played. The bottom line with this team, like I said before the start of the Test match is there’s not a negative bone in the body because they believe they can win anywhere in the world. The endeavour of this team is to be the best travelling team in the world. In India, we know what we can do. But to go to South Africa, England, Australia and try and win there, that’s the endeavour of this team and they have it in them.

What did you tell the team after Lord’s? Get tough mentally. You’re going to look ugly, you have to leave a lot of balls. There’s no shortcut. You have to grind the opposition down when the opposition has (Stuart) Broad and (James) Anderson. They’ve got close to a 1000 wickets and we are playing in their conditions. I don’t care who the batsman you are, you’ve got to tell yourself, if I need a hundred I have to bat five-six hours to get a hundred. Challenge yourself to bat those five-six hours and not one or two hours.

On batsmen finding form: I was disappointed because we ran England close in the first Test, we’re blown away at Lord’s and we needed to prove a point. All I asked the boys was to give me some accountability and there were simply magnificent in all three departments of the game. As a head coach I can’t ask for more. I’m just proud of the guys of the way they stood up, came out here, competed and played.

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