'What do you need that many breaks for' - Shastri not in favour of Dravid being granted frequent rests


Rahul Dravid has been rested for India's upcoming tour of New Zealand. Dravid was given some rest by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) after the end of India's T20 World Cup campaign in Australia. Under Dravid, Rohit Sharma-led India topped their group in the Super 12 round but bowed out of the competition with a heavy ten-wicket defeat at the hands of eventual winners England in the semi-finals. 

After the series, BCCI was quick to give a break to Dravid whereas many regulars such as captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, etc. have also been rested for the white-ball tour of NZ, which gets underway on November 18 in Wellington. Ahead of the series, former India head coach Ravi Shastri has questioned Dravid for his frequent breaks. 

"I do not believe is breaks," Shastri said during a virtual press conference ahead of India-NZ first T20I. "Because I want to understand my team, I want to understand my players and I want to then, be in control of that team. These breaks... what do you need that many breaks for to be honest? You get your 2-3 months of the IPL, that's enough for you to rest as a coach. But other times, I think a coach should be hands on, whoever he is."

Along with Dravid, batting coach Vikram Rathour and bowling coach Paras Mhambrey have also been rested for the NZ tour. The duo have been replaced by Hrishikesh Kanitkar and Sairaj Bahutule respectively. The trio will return during India's tour of Bangladesh in December, where they play two Tests and three ODIs. 

Talking about Shastri, he served as India's head coach from late 2017 till the 2021 T20 WC, in the UAE. During his tenure, he pretty much served as the coach during the entire course of his tenure irrespective of which ever team played for India. During India's last tour of SL, in July 2021, Dravid filled in for Shastri as the head coach when India's second-stringed white-ball side toured the Lankan nation whereas Shastri-Virat Kohli-led India's red-ball team were involved in a five-match Test series in England.

Similarly this year, VVS Laxman filled in for Dravid during Hardik Pandya-led India's two T20Is versus Ireland, in Dublin, and the three-match ODI series versus hosts Zimbabwe in August. During the Ireland trip, Dravid was with the Indian Test team, in the United Kingdom, whereas given rest for the Zimbabwe tour.