Ravichandran Ashwin’s exclusion from India’s playing XI in the World Test Championship final, which the side lost to Australia, still remains one of the talking points. The 36-year-old had played a crucial role for the Indian side as they made it to the final but was benched for the summit clash and at times, it felt that the side missed his services dearly. Ashwin, in a subsequent interview with The Indian Express, had opened up on that and spoke about how teammates are now more of colleagues than friends in the Indian cricket team. And this has evoked a response from Ravi Shastri, the former head coach of the Indian team. 'Let the Bat Do the Talking' Cheteshwar Pujara Shares Video Of Sweating Out in the Nets After Being Dropped From India's Test Squad for West Indies Tour, Fans React.

“This is an era where everybody is a colleague. Once upon a time when cricket was played, all your teammates were friends. Now, they’re colleagues. There’s a big difference because here people are there to advance themselves and to stride ahead of another person sitting to your right or left. So nobody’s got the time to say, ‘okay, boss what are you up to?” Stating that it is an 'isolated journey' playing, Ashwin further stated that cricket is better when teammates understand each other.

He added, “In fact, I believe cricket gets better when you share it. It gets better when you understand another person’s technique and another person’s journey. But it doesn’t happen anywhere close to how much it must happen. Nobody will come for your help. It’s an isolated journey. Of course, you can reach any professional you want to, tap into some coach, you can pay and go, practice, try to feed of them and all that. But sometimes we forget that cricket is a very self-taught sport,” Ashwin had said, in his interview. ‘Why Has Cheteshwar Pujara Been Made the Scapegoat for Our Batting Failures?’ Sunil Gavaskar Unhappy With Veteran’s Exclusion From India’s Test Squad for West Indies Tour.

Shastri, taking note of Ashwin’s comments, issued a response stating that it has always been like this that people look at each other as colleagues and the same can be said both in terms of the dressing room as well as the commentary box, of which he has been a regular part in recent times. “For me, it was always colleagues. You will have buddies who are colleagues. I mean... how many close friends do anyone have? If you go and ask anyone, they will say 4-5... in their life! I'm happy with 5 close friends in my life, I don't want more than that, the former head coach said, adding, “What I'm saying is, all the time colleagues. Commentary box, colleagues,” as quoted by the WEEK.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jun 25, 2023 02:10 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).