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BCCI Not Keen On Kumble Replacing Shastri, Laxman Could Emerge As Dark Horse

It is learnt that BCCI is divided over Kumble’s name as a possible replacement for Shastri.

Anil Kumble was the coach of the Indian team for a year between 2016-17. (Image: Twitter/ @anilkumble1074)

New Delhi: Is Anil Kumble’s reputation of being a high-handed coach going to work against him? Sources have indicated that the former Indian captain won’t be considered for coach’s job after Ravi Shastri’s exit post World T20 in November.

Sources told India Ahead on Thursday that the board officials, on the sidelines of the IPL in the UAE, are already discussing the possible candidate for the job before floating the advertisement for applicants. It is learnt that BCCI is divided over Kumble’s name as a possible replacement for Shastri.

Considering Kumble’s style of working as a coach that came under the scanner during the one-year stint with the team, the board isn’t ready to take a chance, yet again. “Some of the officials suggested Kumble’s name but the board isn’t keen about him. There are a few suggested names as well but Kumble may not be the right man,” a source said.

With the contracts of all the other Indian coaches like Bharat Arun (bowling coach), R Sridhar (fielding coach) and Vikram Rathore (batting) ending with the World T20– the board is looking for fresh faces for the panel.

Sources said that the BCCI is looking for a big name and former Indian cricketer VVS Laxman is the only Indian name that could be a consensus candidate – provided he is willing to take up the job. Similarly, Rahul Dravid is another top choice but it isn’t clear if he is willing to take up the job just as yet.

ALSO READ | Ravi Shastri Had Suggested To Virat Kohli To Give Up All White Ball Captaincy

Sources said that even a couple of the current coaches could retain their contracts for their contribution. Bharat Arun has done “an excellent” job with the team while Rathore has “a great rapport” with the players and, therefore, they may just look into their roles for another two years. However, the board may opt for another fielding coach in place of Sridhar when his contract is up for renewal.

There is also a thought that when Rohit Sharma takes over as the new captain of T20 and as Kohli continues his ODI and Test captaincy – a coaching panel with new ideas should be in place for the betterment of the team. Those with Shastri, who have been around for more than five years within the team, should make way for a fresh team. The board may also be looking at the age cap of 60 years on Indian coaches to ensure a bigger pool of applicants.

With former Indian captain MS Dhoni agreeing to come on board as a mentor for the World T20, BCCI isn’t sure if the association could last longer. “There isn’t anyone better than Dhoni to be with the team. But he may not be in a space to take up full time mentorship. Dhoni agreed to be with the team because he is there in the UAE. But the board is certainly looking for a big gun and there isn’t anyone better than Laxman,” the source added.


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