Ravi Shastri has been stressing on the authority a captain has in the dressing room ever since he was tipped to become Anil Kumble's successor as the head coach of the Indian cricket team. The former captain has once again opined on the issue, saying the captain will always be "the boss" of the team.
Shastri's comments comes at a time when a lot is being spoken about the dressing room atmosphere of the Indian cricket team after the controversial exit of former coach, Kumble. Notably, the legendary leg-spinner, who led the team successfully during his one-year term, stepped down earlier this year following reported rifts with captain Virat Kohli.
While Kumble termed his relationship with Kohli "untenable" after quitting the high-profile job, speculations were rife that legendary leg-spinner was overbearing in the dressing room, drawing negative reactions from the players. It was also reported that the Karnataka giant had 'scolded' the Men in Blue after their loss to Pakistan in the final of Champions Trophy 2017 in June.
Is Shastri the "most desired" coach?
On the contrary, Shastri is being seen as someone who will keep the mood in the dressing room light, regardless of the situation. Notably, the 55-year-old won over Kohli and his men during his stint as Team Director between 2014 and 2016.
"The Captain will always be the boss of the team... And there is a certain element of bonding and trust when it comes to the players dealing with the support staff and our job is making them feel relaxed and make them feel that they are in a great mental space," Shastri said, as quoted by the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) official website.
He added: "I wouldn't say that I am the most desired coach. That is for the players to say. All I'll say is that I like to keep things simple. I am a big switch on and switch off person. I'm a huge guy when it comes to work ethics and values."
Shastri also added that the members of the Indian cricket team aren't differentiated based on their experience and that anyone can approach the support staff and the captain with ease.
"The most experienced player like the former Captain MS Dhoni, he is a wonderful team man. Any youngster can approach him at any stage, in the same capacity any youngster can approach the Captain or me as the Head Coach or anyone in the support staff. That kind of camaraderie is there. If you don't have that kind of sharing, you will not have that kind of trust." Shastri added.
Notably, Shastri's return to the Indian dressing room has proved successful for Kohli and his men. After demolishing Sri Lanka in the three-match Test series, Team India will be eye their first-ever 5-0 ODI whitewash in the island nation when they take on the hosts in the fifth and final match of the series in Colombo on Sunday, September 2.