India's fielding coach Sridhar recalls the moment of having a 12:30 AM meeting with Virat Kohli after the 1st Test vs Australia
India's fielding coach Sridhar recalls the moment of having a 12:30 AM meeting with Virat Kohli

India’s fielding coach R Sridhar recalled the moment when the Indian coach unit have a midnight meeting with Skipper Virat Kohli after the 36 run all out in 1st Test at Adelaide. In a youtube show hosted by R Ashwin, R Sridhar recalls the mindset of the coaches brfore the preparation of 2nd Test vs Austraia.

Conversation between Ashwin and R Sridhar 

R Ashwin

Virat just came to all of us and said ‘Boys, I’m returning home.’ It was like a chat that happens at a college farewell. I thought in my mind ‘Bro, don’t go, we’ve just been bowled out for 36, we need you.’ (Laughs). What were your thoughts?

R Sridhar

It was midnight, around 12.30am, the night we lost the Adelaide Test.

Virat Kohli messaged me: ‘What are you doing?’ I was shocked.

I thought ‘why is he messaging at this time?’ and told him ‘head coach [Ravi Shastri], myself, Bharat Arun and Vikram Rathour are sitting together’.

He said, ‘I’ll also join you’. I said, ‘no problem, come over.’ He came there and all of us started discussing.

That’s where ‘Mission Melbourne’ began. Shastri made a point there: ‘This 36, wear it like a badge! This 36 is what will make this team great’.

Mission Melbourne

We were slightly confused but then we started talking about the decisions we’d have to take. Then Virat called Ajinkya the next morning and we [coaching staff] had a very good discussion.

Watch the full video here.

After a 36 all-out, usually teams would strengthen their batting. But Ravi Shastri, Virat and Ajinkya decided to strengthen the bowling. That’s how we replaced Virat with Ravindra Jadeja, and it was a masterstroke.

Shastri wanted to have more left-handers. He felt because of the presence of only right-handers, the Australians kept bowling at that one spot, so if we bring in a left-hander, their lines may vary, and it may work for us tactically. So, most of the decisions were taken there and it was decided that we’ll go in with five of our best bowlers.

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