Rohit criticises Shastri's 'overconfidence' claim as India eye Australia series win

By Sports Desk March 08, 2023

India captain Rohit Sharma labelled Ravi Shastri's recent criticism as "absolute rubbish", insisting his team's ruthlessness should not be mistaken for overconfidence. 

Former India head coach Shastri felt India played with "complacency and overconfidence" when they lost by nine wickets to Australia in the third Test of the Border-Gavaskar series. 

Having won the first two matches in convincing fashion, the setback means hosts and defending champions India now lead the 2023 series 2-1 with the fourth and final Test starting on Thursday in Ahmedabad.

Rohit said: "When you win two games, if the people outside are feeling that we are overconfident, it's absolute rubbish because you want to do your best in all four games.

"You don't want to stop by winning just two games, it is as simple as that. 

"When they talk about being overconfident and all that - especially the guys who are not part of the dressing room - they don't know what kind of talk happens in the dressing room.

"Ruthless is the word that comes to my mind, and it comes to every cricketer’s mind, being ruthless. Not to give any inch to the opposition.

"The opposition will never let you come into the game, never let you come into the series. And that is the mindset we have as well."

India opened the batting in the third Test, but lost seven wickets in the first session and were all out for a mere 109 runs as they failed to repeat the form that won them the past three Border-Gavaskar trophies. 

Shastri then said on commentary: "This is what a little complacency, a little bit of overconfidence can do when you take things for granted, you drop guard and this game will bring you down.

"I think it was a combination of all these things when you actually cast your mind back to the first innings, see some of the shots played, see some of the overeagerness to try to dominate in these conditions."

The victory confirmed Australia’s spot in the final of the World Test Championship and for India to do the same, they must win in Ahmedabad.

With full focus on the final Test match, Rohit believes Shastri's comments will not affect the squad and says India will continue to play with the same mindset.

"We want to do our best in all the games," said Sharma, who scored just 12 in each innings of the third Test defeat.

"If it seems overconfident or anything like that to the outsiders, it doesn't really matter to us.

"Ravi himself has been in this dressing room, and he knows what sort of mindset we have when we play. It's about being ruthless, not being overconfident."

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