Coach Amre to Shreyas Iyer: You are good player of short ball, forget what others are saying

Bengaluru, Players often know in their subconscious mind how they feel about a certain situation but when the validation comes from someone they can rely on, the next step becomes easier. Former India batsman and renowned coach Praveen Amre has long been Shreyas Iyer’s sounding board, having coached him since his early teens. A chance meeting between the student and the teacher at the Wankhede Stadium before a match in Sri Lanka worked as motivation.

A couple of dismissals off short balls against New Zealand and England put a lot of pressure on the talented Mumbaikar, who came into the team after a long back injury and repeated talks about his technique were not a good thing.

“The Sri Lanka game was very important for him. Everyone was talking about the dismissals but he handled that phase very well,” Amre told PTI after his 94-ball unbeaten 128 against the Netherlands. .

His sequence of scores of 82, 77 and 128 not out in the last three matches.

“As a coach, I would always say there is room for improvement but what I wanted to see was consistency in a big event like the World Cup. After fifties and a century now, it’s a good confidence booster ahead of knock-outs,” said Amre, who was part of India’s 1992 World Cup squad.

For Amre, this whole perception that Iyer is not a good player of the short ball, is just a misconception. “I believe he is out of noise and doesn’t need attention. If Shreyas had technical problems, he wouldn’t have played more than 100 plus games across formats for India. he showed faith full of his abilities,” said Amre, who played 11 Tests and 37 ODIs for India between 1991 and 1994. “You can quit but the team management knew how important it is to have a stable No. 4 when you’re playing with six special batters,” he said.

However, if you are one, you will have to deal with constant criticism and Amre decided to check on his student when the Indian team landed in Mumbai for the game in Lanka.

“I told him one simple thing. Let people say what they want, you do your job. I told him if you play 10 years for India, every time you get a short ball, people will say the same thing. But if you play you 10 years for India, that means you are performing,” the coach said.

So, was there a technical glitch in Iyer’s technique while playing the short ball and should he avoid pull-shots looking at success percentages?

“No why should he stop playing shot? He is a tall man and can play the pull. There is nothing wrong with his technique but the execution was not great. So it was an error of judgment to it was about the selection of the shot not the position of the head or the movement of the legs,” said Amre.

Amre said his coaching philosophy is to let his students find solutions and help them in that process.

“I always gave moral support to my students Ajinkya (Rahane) and Shreyas. After students reach a certain level, you have to listen to them and let them take their own decisions,” Amre said.

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