The race to become the next head coach of Team India has truly begun. Latest to join the race is the former Team India director Ravi Shastri . He has applied for the chief coach’s post of the Indian cricket team, staking strong claims of returning at the helm. Shastri said that he has submitted his application for the post. The former India captain had worked with the team for 18 months as its director. His contract ended at the conclusion of ICC World T20. “Yes, I have applied for the chief coach’s post today (Monday) morning. I have emailed all the requisite documents that were asked for in the advertisement,” Shastri said.
Asked if he has prepared any presentation or roadmap, the veteran of 80 Test matches said: “Whatever is required by the BCCI , I have provided them. If you ask me whether I am confident or not, all I can say is that my job was to apply for the post and I have done that. I cannot comment on anything else.” Shastri had earlier said in an interview that he considered the “18 months with the Indian team as his most memorable experience” in his three-decade long association with the Indian cricket in various capacities.
During his tenure as team director, the notable achievements have been a 3-0 T20 whitewash of Australia, ODI series win in England, away Test series win against Sri Lanka after 22 years, Test series win against South Africa at home, apart from the semi-final finishes in the 50-over and T20 World Cups.
Shastri is the biggest name that has so far applied for the coveted post apart from current chairman of selectors and another former coach Sandeep Patil, who has also thrown his hat in the ring. Patil’s last stint with the Indian team was a disastrous one in which he was in charge for less than one year after Ajit Wadekar quit post the forgettable 1996 World Cup semi-final defeat to Sri Lanka. However, Shastri’s team of support staff – Sanjay Bangar , R Sridhar and Bharat Arun – have not yet applied as BCCI sources believe that they would like to continue in their earlier roles depending on the requirements of the Board.
It is not only Shastri who is eyeing the head coach slot. Selector Vikram Rathour too is keen to jump into the fray. The other big name doing the rounds is that of Indian batting legend Rahul Dravid. After successfully mentoring the Delhi Daredevils , earlier Rajasthan Royals and currently coaching the under – 19 , Dravid has earned kudos with his man management abilities. The biggest plus in his favour is likes of Sunil Gavaskar, Ricky Ponting, Shane Watson, Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh coming out in support of him as the probable next coach. However, It remains to be seen whether ” The wall” applies for the job. IF Dravid applies then it could well between Dravid and Shastri as head coach.
Kiwi Daniel Vettori, could well pip others to the post. He is the coach of the Royal Challengers Bangalore team in the IPL, a team led by Indian skipper Virat Kohli. Vettori and has been recommended by India Test skipper Virat Kohli. Moreover, India plays as many as 17 Tests so skipper’s Kohli’s choice will be the key whom he wants.