As a young boy, Ravi Shastri followed India’s record-breaking run chases on the radio, ears glued for every masterful stroke his idol Gundappa Viswanath played. Barely a decade later, he was on the pitch himself, dazzling fans all over the world by hitting six sixes in one over.
From being Champion of Champions to one of the world’s top cricket commentators to Team India’s , Ravi Shastri has an incomparable perspective when it comes to the game of cricket. In ‘Stargazing: The Players in My Life’, which releases in the UK this week, the legendary all-rounder looks back at the extraordinary talent he has encountered over the years.
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“It’s 40 years, four decades have gone by and it’s been one fabulous journey. This is a book where I share my experiences over that time. It’s with players who made me enjoy the ride, players that have given me entertainment – as players, as opponents, as broadcasters and as players now,” said Shastri, at a recent launch event for the book in .
Who is the former Indian captain who didn’t do full justice to his talent? Or that bruising bowler who went on to become a best friend? What was the most important lesson the legendary Clive Lloyd taught him? What did he want to tell M.S. Dhoni, but didn’t, when the latter announced his decision to retire? How does Shastri set aside his personal bond with in his role as coach?
Full of never-before-revealed anecdotes and insights, ‘Stargazing’, co-written with sports journalist Ayaz Memon and featuring illustrations by Shiva Rao, offers a glimpse into how over sixty illustrious champions from across the globe have impressed and inspired one of the world’s greatest ODI players and Team India’s most successful cricket coach.
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Shastri began playing first-class cricket at the age of seventeen as part of the Bombay Ranji Trophy squad. He made his Test debut in 1981 as a left-arm spinner, starting off at number ten and moving up to opening batsman in little over a year. Having had a stellar career in ODI and Test cricket, he was named Champion of Champions’ in 1985 at the World Championship.
After retiring from international cricket in 1992, Shastri enjoyed a distinguished career as a commentator and analyst. As Head Coach of the Indian cricket team since 2017, he has steered Team India to numerous victories in his own distinctive style.