Southampton [UK], June 18 (ANI): India fielding coach R Sridhar on Friday said that the Virat Kohli-led side is in good spirits and everyone is raring to go for the World Test Championship (WTC) finals against New Zealand.
The first session of the opening day was washed off. And with rain finally stopping in the second session, an inspection was to take place at 3 pm local time -- 7:30 pm IST. But unfortunately, it started raining again around 7:10 pm IST. Before this, there was no rain for a period of close to 50 minutes. Eventually, Day One was completely washed out due to rain.
"That's a good question. As far as the first part of your question, as motivation goes, I don't think you need to motivate anyone who's representing their country. And in a World Test Championship final, I think there is no further and better motivation than that. Yes, to keep them in good mental space, that is something which is very important," said Sridhar while replying to an ANI query during a virtual press conference.
"They are going to be on and off the field with the weather, so they will have to know how to keep their concentration going, switching on, switching down, switching off, so that is something all the players are aware of. They are a very, very experienced bunch of players. They have played a few finals, they have won a few tournaments and they've played a few test matches, each one of them in that eleven. So yeah, they all know how to do it, and they are in a delicate frame of mind as of now. They are in good space," he added.
Asked whether Team India would be tempted to change the playing XI for the WTC final, Sridhar said: "I was expecting this to be the first question. The eleven that has been announced is eleven that takes conditions out of the equation. I think it's the eleven that can play and perform on any given surface and any given weather conditions. This eleven that has been put on the park. If need be, a decision will be taken."
Talking about the reserve day for the WTC final, the fielding coach said: "It''s trial and refinement with experience that ICC has got in organising matches and they know what it is about. And we all know how the English weather is. I think they have been prudent and wise. As it is, if play starts on time, we are looking at four hours of play on the reserve day."
"That's going to make it a complete match and that's what the viewers and audience want, a complete game," he added.
While fans could think that losing a day would mean the Reserve Day automatically coming into play -- only 2.5 hours can be made up over the course of the five days of a Test match -- sources in the know of developments said and a call on the same will be taken by match officials on the fifth day of the game.
"The Reserve Day will come into play when the match officials say, likely on Day Five when they know it is needed," the source told ANI.
The playing conditions released by the ICC confirm that a draw or a tie will see both teams crowned as joint winners and there is a Reserve Day to make up for any lost time during the regular days of the final -- scheduled to be played from June 18 to 22. June 23 has been set aside as the Reserve Day. Both these decisions were made in June 2018, prior to the commencement of the WTC. (ANI)