Former off-spinner and women's team coach Ramesh Powar has been named India A bowling coach for the upcoming series against South Africa A.
Ramesh Powar, who played two Tests and 31 ODIs for India, was embroiled in controversy late last year after he fell out with senior women's team player Mithali Raj when he was the head coach. Ramesh Powar had reapplied for the same position but the Cricket Advisory Committee headed by 1983 World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev chose W V Raman as his successor. "He has been appointed only for South Africa A series," a BCCI official told PTI on Tuesday. Although Ramesh Powar has not enjoyed a successful stint as a coach, he has been named on an interim basis just for India A's tour of South Africa.
Ravi Shastri laid out his plans for the Men in Blue over the next two years and placed a large focus on the smooth transition of the team by the end of his tenure. Shastri said that the team was going to see a huge influx of youngsters in the coming days and that it was exciting and essential to nurture and groom them for the big leagues. The head coach laid out special emphasis on making India the best fielding side in the world. He said that fielding was a very important part of the game and that the team was already an excellent fielding unit.
"Whosoever wants to play for Team India in the future, their fielding skills will also be taken seriously as Iwant to make India the best fielding side in the world", he said.
Sourav Ganguly praised Indian team's new batting coach Vikram Rathour for his work at the grassroots. Sourav Ganguly said he was happy that home-bred support staff were given priority to coaches from abroad by the selection committee. After former India all-rounder Shastri was reappointed as coach of the team, the MSK Prasad-led selection panel opted for Rathour, Bharat Arun and R Sridhar as the batting, bowling and fielding coach respectively.
"I am extremely happy that our own home bred coaches are given priority which is good because they have put in a lot of effort. With Indian coaches, communication (with the players) is good, they understand the mindset (of the players). This country has produced some great players," he said. "India us No. 1 cricketing county in the world. I am not saying just in terms of the money they generate, but also that a number of people play the sport, players attached to the game. I am happy that the likes of Ravi (Shastri), Sridhar, Vikram (Rathour), Bharat Arun have got the opportunity to take Indian cricket forward because they got as much ability as anybody else in the world," Ganguly added.
India A will be playing two four day games and a five-match unofficial 'ODI' series against South Africa A. The one-day series will be played in Thiruvananthapuram beginning from Thursday