Former Indian all-rounder and current head coach Ravi Shastri on Wednesday launched a new book by the Bradman Museum called ‘India’s 71-Year Test: The Journey to Triumph in Australia’, at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The book, authored by cricket journalist R Kaushik, describes India’s first 12 tours to Australia, uncovering the shaping up of the rivalry between the two nations which was majorly dominated by the hosts.
According to a cricket.com.au report, the book features more than 200 pictures, many of which were found languishing in the United States of America (USA) and purchased by former Australia Test opener Wally Edwards who donated them to the Bradman Museum collection.
While launching the book at SCG, Shastri said, “Well, it was an honour. Really, because the history of Indian cricket and Australian cricket goes deep. Once you read this book, you know where I’m coming from. I was fascinated reading the first four or five chapters of this book. You get goosebumps when you read it.”
“The early stages — Lala Amarnath’s coming here, Vinoo Mankad’s coming here and Donald Bradman playing against India. India playing against New South Wales and Hazare getting 200… so it’s fascinating. And then it goes on and on.
“Some great players in this book who have performed extremely well against Australia over the years and it’s a rich history. So, I think it’s a fantastic read. Kaushik has done a great job. These legends, they played for the love of the game and they set a fantastic platform,” he added.
Shastri also unveiled a portrait of former Indian captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar and heaped praises on his former skipper. He also explained why he believes that the latter was the best opening batsman he had seen.
“Wow! Excellent! He [Gavaskar] is easily the best opening batsman I have ever seen. I had the privilege to play under him and watch the master technician at work. Nothing fazed him. 13 hundred against West Indies is a tribute to the way he played the game.
“In his prime, he was called the ‘Mumbai Bradman’ when he was getting all those hundreds. In that era, to reach 34 hundreds and 13 just against the mighty West Indies was fabulous. Great tribute to you Sunny and great honour to unveil your portrait,” said Shastri.
Team India is currently in Sydney to play the 3rd Test of the 4-match series which begins from Thursday.