The Indian fairy tale at the cricket World Cup 2019 took just a day to turn for the worse after Virat Kohli’s side went down fighting against New Zealand in the semi-final at Old Trafford on July 10. As India lost the rain-hit affair by 18 runs, the knives were gradually out and now there is a renewed effort to overhaul Team India’s support staff members. One of the top positions that is set to see a change is that of the head coach.
The Committee of Administrators (CoA) that runs the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has reinstated the three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) for the selection of the new coach. Former cricketers Kapil Dev, Anshuman Gaekwad and Shantha Rangaswamy will be part of that panel. While Kapil and Anshuman have served as India’s coaches in the past, Shantha has been the captain of the women’s team in the 1970s and 1980s.
The criteria for the selection of the new head coach as well as other support staff members was released by the BCCI on Tuesday and it said that all three coaches (batting, bowling and fielding) should have played at least 10 Tests and 25 ODIs and be less than 60 years of age. The head coach, on the other hand, should have coached a Test-playing nation for at least two years or three years with an associate member/A team or IPL side. He should also have played a minimum of 30 Tests or 50 ODIs.
Though the 57-year-old Shastri will have to re-apply for the position of head coach, he remains a popular choice to continue for the position. The current coaching staff members’ contracts ended at the end of the World Cup but they were asked to continue till the end of the West Indies series starting August 3 and concluding on September 3. Bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach R Sridhar are also expected to continue at their positions.
It’s unlikely that Shastri will go, say sources
“It is very unlikely that he (Shastri) will not be retained. This coaching unit has done well and there has to be continuity. Even the team wants the same,” sources was quoting as saying by The Times of India. Shastri had taken over after Anil Kumble had a premature exit over reports of differences with Kohli and India haven’t done too badly under him, winning a Test series in Australia earlier this year.
“Those who blame Shastri for coming in mid-way as coach forget that he was always there. It is because of the mess created in the board by certain individuals that he was so rudely and shockingly sidelined.”
Shastri’s record of chipping in as the team director in 2015 when there was a crisis at the top has spoken in favour of him all the more.
Shastri has played in 80 Tests and 150 ODIs for India.
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