Team India are all set to take on England in the five-match Test series and Indian coach Ravi Shastri is confident that the current crop can achieve new heights while touring abroad as well.
India has won just 9 out of 25 Tests they have played overseas since 2014, which is very poor record considering Team India are No. 1 in the ICC Test rankings.
India’s last tour abroad was against South Africa where they lost the Test series 2-1 but they showed a competitive and fighting spirit in all the three Test matches.
“The challenge for us is to be consistent in the red-ball format overseas,” said Shastri in an interview with ESPNCricinfo. “We believe we have the potential to be one of the best travelling teams.
“At the moment, there is no side in the world that travels properly. You can see what is happening to South Africa in Sri Lanka. We know our scorelines in England before this tour: 4-0 (2011), 3-1 (2014). We want to do much better than that.”
Shastri also feels that Team India have an equal chance of winning the series as compared to hosts as they also have the ability to bowl out the opposition twice in the match.
“We have a bowling attack that can take 20 wickets. We are not bothered by what conditions we play in. We have the variety but we need to execute our plans in the best possible manner. And bat well, which is important. Our batting let us down in South Africa.”
Ravi Shastri also backed skipper Virat Kohli of coming good with the bat this time around. India’s premier batsman had a poor showing during the tour in 2014, averaging only 13.4 in ten innings.
“I don’t have to spell out what he has done in the last four years,” he said. “When you perform in that fashion, you are mentally at a different level as well. You are waiting for whatever test comes your way.”
“Yes, he might have had an ordinary series when he came here four years ago. But four years down the line he is the best player in the world. And he would like to get out there and show the British public why he is the best player in the world.”