first_imgIndia coach Ravi Shastri on Wednesday said that the team is all set and ready for the tough challenges on overseas tours.Team India is all set to depart for South Africa from Mumbai today where they will play a series of three Tests, six ODIs and 3 T20Is starting January 5.”We are all looking forward to the South Africa tour. It is going to be a challenge. We all know how tough it is to tour South Africa but that’s the beauty about their profession. Wanting challenges and embracing it. That’s what we are looking for,” Shastri said at the press conference.The former India all-rounder also said that the next year-and-a-half will define Indian cricket.”The conditions will be testing but these one-and-a-half years will define Indian cricket,” said Shastri.Shastri had also touched upon the topic of the South Africa tour a couple of days back when he said this will be an opportunity for the team and he is backing his men to do what they have done right through their successful home season.India signed 2017 off with a spectacular 3-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka, bringing to an end a dominant calendar year where they won 37 international matches, second only to Australia’s record of 38 such wins 14 years ago.In the course of these 12 months, India won limited-overs series against England, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand. Test series triumphs against Bangladesh, Australia and Sri Lanka ensured India remained on top of the ICC rankings.advertisementIndia play their first Test in Cape Town from January 5 and the world’s top-ranked Test team will be expected to replicate their home season form in a country where they have never won a Test series.The boys are really looking forward to it, we know it is going to be a huge challenge: Ravi Shastri #IndvsSA pic.twitter.com/4z74IrRujT- ANI (@ANI) December 27, 2017″For us, all opposition is the same, all opposition has to be respected, every game is a home game and as it turns out next month is in South Africa,” Shastri had told India Today’s Boria Majumdar.”Now where South Africa is different is that we have never won a series in South Africa and therein lies a massive opportunity for the team to do something special.”The belief is there and we will treat South Africa like we have treated every other opposition. There will be respect but we will go there to play to win,” Shastri said.India have now won nine successive Test series to be at level with Australia and a series win in South Africa would help Kohli’s men create a new world record for 10 successive Test series triumphs.last_img

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