New Delhi, Mar 24:
“There were no retakes”, said Australia’s Indian spin coach Sridharan Sriram as he talked about being part of the much-acclaimed web series ‘The Test’, which chronicles the side’s journey from ball-tampering shame to Ashes glory.
The former India international has been a part of Australian cricket’s tough transformation period after the ball-tampering scandal, which prompted a review of the team’s ethics besides stringent sanctions on the players involved.
But the team fought back adversity under coach Justin Langer’s guidance and Tim Paine’s leadership. “What you see is all real, there were no retakes, all the visuals are raw and natural,” Sriram recalled with a lot of fondness.
The agony and ecstasy in Justin Langer’s facial contours, coming of age of Paine as a skipper and successful reintegration of Steve Smith and David Warner are the highlights of the eight-part series.
“I think it’s a brilliant story of our (the Australian Team’s) journey from Cape Town to the end of the Ashes. I consider myself very fortunate to have been a part of the journey,” Sriram, who featured prominently in a couple of episodes, said.
But was it easy to express oneself with cameraman present in the dressing room? “The cameraman did a fantastic job and integrated into the team easily,” said Sriram, who played eight ODIs for India in early 2000 and was a steady batting all-rounder for Tamil Nadu, South Zone and A team for many years.
Asked what’s the best part of being in an Australian set up now that he has worked for nearly five years, Sriram said, “What you see is what you get with our players and the management group.” “As I said, I consider myself very fortunate to be a part of this journey and this is a great group of people to work with,” the 44-year-old added.
“Working with Justin Langer has been a great learning curve for me. He is very honest, extremely hardworking and expects high standards from his staff and players. It doesn’t surprise me what he has achieved in this journey with the team,” said Sriram.
In one of the episodes, Sriram can be seen addressing the team prior to the final day of Australia’s Test match against Pakistan in Dubai, where he declared that Aussies could save the Test and they did.