'Boosted our confidence': Shami silences critics of PM Modi's dressing room visit after WC defeat (WATCH)
After their loss in the Cricket World Cup 2023 final to Australia, PM Modi visited the Indian dressing room, individually meeting and consoling each player - a gesture that was slammed by several critics as using the moment for photo op.
India's seamer, Mohammed Shami, on Thursday highlighted the significance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's supportive gestures towards the Indian cricket team. After their loss in the Cricket World Cup 2023 final to Australia, PM Modi visited the Indian dressing room, individually meeting and consoling each player - a gesture that was slammed by several critics as using the moment for photo op. Shami, who received praise from the Prime Minister for his outstanding tournament performance, expressed that such gestures provided a much-needed boost to the team's confidence during a challenging time.
Shami emphasized the importance of the Prime Minister's encouragement, especially when the team's morale was low, stating, "Such gestures are important. When the Prime Minister encourages you after that, it gives you confidence. Because your morale is already down. It is something really different."
PM Modi had previously conveyed his support to the Indian side through a social media message, applauding their talent and determination in the World Cup. "Dear Team India, Your talent and determination through the World Cup was noteworthy. You've played with great spirit and brought immense pride to the nation. We stand with you today and always," PM Modi said in a social media post, while also congratulating the Australian team for lifting their 6th World Cup title.
India's head coach, Rahul Dravid, addressed the post-match press conference, expressing the difficulty of witnessing the team's emotional reaction after the World Cup Final. Despite India's near-perfect performance throughout the tournament, they faced a collective off day in the summit clash. Their batting performance fell short, and the bowling was not effective after the initial 10 overs, leading to Australia successfully chasing down the target with 6 wickets in hand and 42 balls remaining.
Reflecting on the team's overall performance, Shami acknowledged that it was just an off day for India. He commended the team's skills and confidence, attributing the loss to a lack of execution and runs. Despite the setback, Shami affirmed that the team's morale and confidence remained intact.
"Overall we all performed really well. There was no shortage of skill and confidence. I feel sometimes as a team, we can all have that one bad day, which can come anytime. That day did not belong to us. We lacked in execution, runs, but there was not anything due to which our morale and confidence was down," said Shami.