Indian cricketing legend Sunil Gavaskar has picked Ravi Shastri to succeed Anil Kumble as Team India Coach owing to his stint with team India during 2014-16. Shastri formally applied for the post yesterday and the Cricket Advisory Committee(CAC) will interview the applicants on July 10th in Mumbai.
The mystery on who will succeed Anil Kumble after the former leg-spinner stepped down as the Indian coach on June 20th is soon to be solved with the CAC comprising Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman all set to interview the prospects on July 10th in Mumbai. Ravi Shastri filed a formal application for the post yesterday after he confirmed throwing his hat in the ring a week ago.
The former Indian all-rounder had not applied for the post when BCCI had earlier invited applications with Anil Kumble in for a direct entry into the process. However, the 55-year old changed his decision after Kumble resigned from the post terming his 'untenable' relationship with Indian skipper Virat Kohli as the reason for the same.
Cricketing legend and expert Sunil Gavaskar has predicted the former Team India director to bag the job.
Ravi (Shastri) actually was the one where the turnaround actually started for the Indian cricket team back in 2014. After India lost in England, the BCCI asked him to come in as a team director... suddenly there was a change in the team's fortunes over a period of time. Now that he's applied, he's probably the man who is going to get the job
"Ravi (Shastri) actually was the one where the turnaround actually started for the Indian cricket team back in 2014. After India lost in England, the BCCI asked him to come in as a team director... suddenly there was a change in the team's fortunes over a period of time. Now that he's applied, he's probably the man who is going to get the job," Gavaskar told NDTV.
The high-profile names that have applied for the post apart from Shastri include former Indian opener Virender Sehwag, Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody, former Afghanistan coach Lalchand Rajput, two-time Pakistan coach Richard Pybus, Dodda Ganesh. The latest addition to the list was Phil Simmons who had earlier coached the West Indies team and led them to the 2016 World Twenty20 title.
However, there have been reports that the Men in Blue are backing Shastri under whom the team won their first Test series in Sri Lanka in 22 years followed by a 3-0 win against South Africa in a 4-match home Test series. The Indian team also lifted the Asia Cup and reached the semi-finals of the 2015 World Cup under Shastri's supervision.
But despite his equation with Virat Kohli and a healthy record as the director, when the time came to select the Team India coach, the CAC chose Anil Kumble over him. Sourav Ganguly recently clarified the decision stating the former leg-spinner was selected keeping the spinners in mind who have proven to be India's first line of attack in bowling since ages.
Gavaskar feels that the Cricket Advisory Committee will this time choose Shastri owing to the experience he has.
"There's (Virender) Sehwag, (Tom) Moody who has done a wonderful job with the Sunrisers Hyderabad (in the Indian Premier League)... yes there are candidates who are around but Ravi has the experience. Ravi has been with the team before, he seems comfortable with the team," Gavaskar said.
"I would imagine the CAC would go back to a person the team feels comfortable with and give him the job," the former India captain added.
The Indian team is currently touring West Indies and faced their first loss against the home team in the 4th ODI when the Men in Blue failed to chase down a modest 190. MS Dhoni has been in the line of fire since then as the former Indian skipper took his sweet time during the Indian innings scoring his half-century in 108 deliveries and eventually faltered in shifting gears towards the end of the innings that resulted in India losing the match by a margin of 11-runs.
However, Gavaskar believes the loss should be attributed to the batting collapse collectively and Dhoni should not be singled out for criticism.
"Stop blaming MSD. It was a team batting failure," Gavaskar added.
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