Australia allowed Team India's families to travel after Ravi Shastri gave ultimatum to BCCI

Australia allowed Team India’s families to travel after Ravi Shastri gave ultimatum to BCCI

Ravi Shastri also added that he knows very well how to bargain with Australia.

Ravi Shastri
Ravi Shastri. (Photo by Satyabrata Tripathy/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Team India’s fielding coach R Sridhar has revealed Ravi Shastri had threatened to boycott the tour of Australia after the team was told they were not allowed to take their families Down Under. Cricket Australia reportedly did not want the Indian players to come to Australia with their families because of the pandemic.

The members of the Indian team, however, were unaware of the development and came to know about it only 48 hours before departing for Australia from Dubai. Sridhar revealed the incident while speaking to India spin spearhead Ravichandran Ashwin in a video posted on the latter’s YouTube channel. Unsurprisingly, the players and the staff members were not happy with the decision of living without their family for nearly three months.

For some players who were playing in the IPL, it would have been almost six months. There was chaos in the team as the players had already called their family members to Dubai. This is when Ravi Shastri intervened and took a tough stance. The head coach made it clear that the team would not depart to Australia without their families.

“Do you know something? When we were quarantining in Dubai, before the last 48 hours, they suddenly announced that the families were not allowed. So, even before the Australian tour started, they had started their sledging. Their off-the-field sledging,” Sridhar told Ashwin.

“We had calls during night time. And then there was time difference as well and we had to co-ordinate between Dubai, India and Australia. ‘Sorry. Families are not allowed. Australian Government is strict on this’,” he added.

Ashwin then intervened by saying: “I communicated the same to my wife. She said sarcastically ‘Alright. I will see someone else then’. It had been six months since we saw each other. I had them landed at Dubai just then with my kids. Before I could even finish hugging them, this news of families being not allowed hit us.”

Ravi Shastri stands for Team India:

R Sridhar further revealed how Ravi Shastri came to the team’s rescue. He revealed that a total of seven players had brought their family with them. Shastri then took the matter in his own hands and stated that the team would boycott the tour if the families were not allowed.

“There were totally 7 players who had brought their families and kids. How to convey this to them? Then came Ravi Shastri into the scene. He then set up a zoom meeting since all of us were in our rooms doing our quarantine,” said R Sridhar before revealing the head coach’s message: ‘If my players’ families are not allowed, then we won’t be going to Australia as well. Do whatever you can. That’s the news from the centre.’

Speaking further, Sridhar said: “And then he added, ‘No one knows Australia better than me. I have been going there for the last 40 years’. How one should behave or bargain with them, I know, I know’. He gave his usual sigh after that. He literally made sure that BCCI listened to what he said. They listened and then allowed for our families to travel with us. Australian Government worked overnight during the weekend to get the permission.”