New Delhi: Ravi Shastri has been appointed the next coach of the Indian team and will be at the helm of affairs till the 2019 World Cup. The decision was announced by the Cricket Advisory Committee on Tuesday after the BCCI Committee of Administrators directed the committee to consult Virat Kohli and announce the name of the coach at the earliest.
Cricketnext had first reported about the BCCI approaching Shastri for the post of coach at the insistence of Virat Kohli last month. Sources in the BCCI had told Cricketnext that Shastri had agreed to apply for the post after getting assurance from the BCCI about getting the post.
Having interviewed five candidates on Monday, the Cricket Advisory Committee — comprising of Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman — had made it clear that the name will be announced after India skipper Virat Kohli’s return from America. But the SC-appointed Committee of Administrators stood ground and ensured that the announcement took place on Tuesday itself.
The CAC had on Tuesday interviewed five candidates — Shastri, Virender Sehwag, Tom Moody, Richard Pybus and Lalchand Rajput. Former West Indies coach Phil Simmons wasn’t available for the interview process.
Speaking to CricketNext, a BCCI official said that while the initial decision was set to be taken after Kohli returns from America next week, things took a turn late on Monday night after discussions between the COA and BCCI CEO Rahul Johri.
“Till around 9:30 in the evening, it was decided that the coach’s call would be made after the CAC meets with Kohli once he is back from America. But then things started rolling and the COA made it clear to the CAC that the announcement should be made today itself. Johri and BCCI secretary Amitabh Choudhary were briefed of the same,” the official said.
While there are different views on the matter and speculations remain rife about how Shastri landed the job, it is believed that the committee did not wish to rub skipper Kohli the wrong way as it is the skipper who has to interact with the coach 24×7.
“The CAC was indeed impressed by Ravi Shastri’s presentation and it was then decided that Kohli should be brought into the scene and the skipper should make the call because at the end of the day, it is the captain who will have to spend time with the coach and the equation cannot be compromised,” a BCCI official in the know of developments explained.
Shastri, who was the Team Director between 2014 and 2016, had lost out to Anil Kumble for the top job after last year.
The position of coach was vacated after Anil Kumble resigned from the post after the end of the ICC Champions Trophy and decided not to re-apply. Kumble’s decision was influenced by his deteriorating relationship with captain Virat Kohli as he confirmed on social media that he took the decision due to captain Kohli’s reservations with his “style” and about him continuing as the head coach.
Ravi Shastri, during his tenure with the team as director had guided India to the semi-finals of the 2015 ICC World Cup and the 2016 ICC WT20. It was Shastri, who was at the helm of affairs, when Team India, under Kohli’s leadership, blanked top ranked South Africa in a Test series at home.