Melbourne: Indian cricket team's Director Ravi Shastri played a massive role in getting Shikhar Dhawan back on track after a prolonged lean patch during the tour of Australia that preceded the ongoing World Cup, according to a team official.
It has been learnt that Shastri had a lengthy session with Dhawan just before the start of the World Cup, which definitely helped the fiery left-hander, who is presently India's leading run-scorer in the World Cup with 337 runs, including two centuries and a half-century.
"Before the World Cup started, Ravi (Shastri) had a lengthy session with Shikhar (Dhawan) and gave him a pep talk.
Those of us, who have seen Ravi address the players from time to time would swear by his passionate speeches. It worked wonders for Dhawan as everyone can see," a senior member of the Indian team's support staff told PTI on Tuesday on condition of anonymity.
According to the team official, the best aspect about Shastri's pep talk was that it has got nothing to do with technical nuances.
"Ravi does not talk on cricketing matters or about any technical problems that the players might be facing. Ravi made one thing clear to the players. There is a chief coach Duncan Fletcher and three assistant coaches in Sanjay Bangar, Bharath Arun and R Sridhar. Any technical problem will be addressed by the quartet.
"For him, it's about giving time to the players, understanding what's going through their mind. In case of Shikhar, Ravi told him that he should just play in the manner that has got him runs all these days," said the official.
The team official also said that chief coach Duncan Fletcher and bowling coach Bharath Arun normally preside over all the team meetings.
"The players normally don't speak a lot at the team meetings. It's normally Duncan or Bharath Arun, who addresses the players and also reveal the homework done by them.
(Mahendra Singh) Dhoni normally keeps quiet at team meetings.
I have not seen him speak much at the team meetings. But yes, he does address the team during the huddles. Normally, it's Virat (Kohli) or MS (Dhoni) who address the team but anyone can express their view at team huddle.
Meanwhile, the families of the Indian cricketers have started arriving in Melbourne. It has been learnt that pacer Umesh Yadav's wife Tanya has already arrived while Ajinkya Rahane's better half Radhika is expected to arrive tomorrow.
Stuart Binny's wife Mayanti Langer is already there from the start of the tournament by virtue of her media engagement.
The Indian team had a two hour work out today at the MCG where they had fielding drills and customary football session.