T20 World Cup 2021: WATCH- A bigger gap between IPL and World Cup would’ve been ideal- India coach Ravi Shastri

Shastri's tenure as India head coach comes to an end after T20 World Cup 2021 | Getty

Outgoing India head coach Ravi Shastri admitted that the Indian team failed to win their opening two matches in the ongoing T20 World Cup 2021 as they lacked the X-factor to do it. He also cited that the players were mentally and physically drained and a longer break between the IPL 2021 and the ICC event would have been favorable.

Indian team has been knocked out of the semi-finals race as New Zealand defeated Afghanistan on Sunday and qualified for the knockouts along with Pakistan from group 2 of the Super 12s stage. Even if the Men in Blue wins against Namibia, they would not be able to leapfrog New Zealand at the second position in Group 2 to make the semi-finals.

“I am mentally drained but I expect that at my age. These guys are physically and mentally drained, six months in a bubble and we would have ideally liked a bigger gap between the IPL and the World Cup,” said Shastri before the game against Namibia.

It’s when the big games come and when the pressure hits you – you are not that switched on as you should be. And it’s not an excuse. We take defeat because we are not scared of losing. Because in trying to win, you will lose a game. Here we didn’t try to win because that X-factor was missing,” he added.

This match also marked the end of Virat Kohli as India’s T20I captain and Ravi Shastri’s tenure as a head coach also comes to an end here, with Rahul Dravid set to take over from him in the upcoming New Zealand series at home.

Shastri said that Rahul Dravid has inherited a great team and he can only raise the bar as the man in charge.

In Rahul Dravid, they’ve got a guy who has inherited a great team and I think with his experience, he can only raise the bar in time to come. There are still players here who will play for another 3-4 years which is very important. It is not a team in transition and that’ll make the biggest difference,” Shastri said.

He praised Virat Kohli’s captaincy and said: “Virat is still there, he has done a fantastic job as the leader of the side, he’s been the biggest ambassador for Test cricket over the last five years. A lot of credit goes to him in the way he’s thought about how he wants the team wants to play the game and how the team has rallied around him.”