Former India head coach Ravi Shastri said today that India would have won the fifth test against England in Manchester last year if the visitors had played the series finale after a few days with him in the dressing room. That test was postponed due to Covid-19 cases in the Indian camp. Shastri had to isolate himself during the 4th Test, which India won. Today, Shastri was dealing with the issue of players getting panicked by Covid-19.
There is no need for panic when dealing with Covid-19 cases among players and members of the support staff during tournaments, Shastri said, adding that the infection should just be treated like flu.
Shastri said he was hopeful that India head coach Rahul Dravid would be able to recover in time from Covid-19 and join the senior national team ahead of their opening match against Pakistan on 28 August in Dubai. Shastri's comments followed the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) confirmation that Dravid had tested positive for Covid-19 during the routine pre-departure testing procedure and that the board's medical team was monitoring the former captain.
Dravid has not travelled with the rest of the Indian team to the UAE with the BCCI saying that the head coach will reunite with the squad once he returned with a negative test. "I don't think it will make that much of a difference. Today, don't call it Covid-19, it's just flu. In 3-4 days, it will be fine. He will be back on the park," Ravi Shastri told Star Sports in the run-up to the Asia Cup.
India played the rescheduled fifth test in Southampton in July this year under head coach Rahul Dravid and went on to lose it, allowing England to level the series 2-2. "Even I could have when I had Covid-19 last year, I could have gone into the dressing room in 6 days. I promise you if I had gone into the dressing room in 6-7 days and we would have played that test match and won it at Old Trafford. This Covid, Covid, you don't talk about Covid now. It's just flu. Take a couple of paracetamols and he would be back in time for India vs Pakistan," he added.