Ravi Shastri’s life has come full circle, from left-arm spinner to bowling all-rounder, from cricket commentator to head coach of the Indian cricket team. Since retiring from cricket, the flamboyant former player has played a variety of positions.
Ravi Shastri, known for his charm and wit, has enthralled generations with this captivating commentary. So much so that it’s hard to think about cricket commentary without thinking of Ravi Shastri.
Shastri has continued to remain in the headlines since the beginning of his career. His fascinating life storey is rife with accomplishments, intrigue, and scandals.
Shastri was born and raised in Mumbai, but comes from a Mangalorean background. Shastri had a cousin who captained the Indian women’s swimming team, despite not being from a sporting background.
At Don Bosco High School in Matunga, he was introduced to cricket. He quickly became enamoured with the game, and it soon became his obsession. Shastri captained his high school team to a Giles Shield win in 1977. B.D.Desai, his mentor, had a major impact on him.
Shastri chose to study Commerce at R.A. Podar College after matriculation. He was pushed in the right direction by the deep cricketing community here. He represented Bombay in the Ranji Trophy when he was only 17 years old and still in junior college, making him the youngest player to play for Bombay.
For the 1980-81 season, Shastri was a member of the Under-19 squad. The tour was sadly cancelled. Shastri didn’t have much success with the bat in his early Ranji seasons, but he did have some memorable bowling performances. Shastri’s tremendous creativity was on show during the Ranji Trophy in 1984-85, when he helped his team win the championship. The tournament was made even more memorable by the fact that Shastri had established himself as a capable all-rounder.
Shastri debuted in a Test match against New Zealand in 1981. He began his career as a tenth-position batsman, but he rapidly progressed to opening batsman. 1984 was a particularly memorable year for Shastri. When India visited Pakistan, he showed great class. During this time, his leadership ability was evident to everyone. Shastri led the Under-25 side to a spectacular victory over England’s touring team.
He had a lot of experience as an opener in one-day cricket. Shastri also started two World Cup matches in 1983.
For Shastri, the World Championship of Cricket tournament in Australia was a watershed moment. He scored 182 runs and took eight wickets in the series, earning him the tag of “The Champion of Champions.” Shastri was appointed vice-captain for the first time in the same year. It happened in Sharjah during the Rothman’s Cup.
When then-captain Dilip Vengsarkar broke his arm in 1987, Shastri took over as captain of the Indian test team for the first time. Shastri, on the other hand, failed to make an impression as a captain. Shastri was promoted to vice-captain after a couple of tournament defeats and other scandals.
Ravi Shastri as a Commentator
As a cricket commentator, Shastri had a lot of popularity. In March 1995, he made his debut as an analyst at the World Masters Tournament in Mumbai. Later in his career, he worked with a variety of networks and managed to wow viewers with his signature wit and charisma. Shastri joined the Indian Premier League as an official commentator in 2008.
Head Coach of Indian National Cricket Team
Shastri was India’s team chief from 2014 to 2016. Following a squabble between then-Head Coach Anil Kumble and captain Virat Kohli, Kumble resigned, and the hunt for a new Head Coach began.
The Cricket Advisory Committee named Shastri as Head Coach. This committee includes Saurav Ganguly, VVS Laxman, and Sachin Tendulkar. Shastri is paid handsomely for his service, with a salary of Rs. 8 crores.
“Ever since we began creating this team, his contribution has been to make people feel like they belong there. We all had a terrible time in 2014 (on the England tour), and for me to be able to come out of it, and Shikhar (Dhawan) will vouch for that in the 2015 World Cup… He understands how to elicit the highest performance from his players. At this rank, it’s all about man-management, and Ravibhai has done a fantastic job of it,” Captain Kohli told The Telegraph.
Ravi Shastri Personal Life
In the late 1980s, Shastri was dating Bollywood actress Amrita Singh. In November 1986, the couple was engaged and posed together for the cover of Cine Blitz magazine. Stuff, however, easily fizzled out.
Shastri married Ritu Singh in the year 1990. Aleka, the couple’s daughter, was born in 2008. Shastri filed for divorce from his wife in 2012, after 22 years of marriage. He was linked to actress Nimrit Kaur, according to reports. Both of them, however, rejected them.