The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had come up with an application process for the posts of head coach, administrative manager, batting, bowling fielding, strength and conditioning coach and physio a couple of days after the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 was concluded. The deadline for sending these applications was on Tuesday. However, as per media reports, current head coach of Team India Ravi Shastri is likely to retain his position. Shastri was appointed as the coach back in July 2017 and has completed two years with the team. The 57-year-old's candidature got a direct entry for the ongoing selection process and as said reports, the former all-rounder is likely to get a two-year extension till the ICC World T20 in 2021.
This comes days after Virat Kohli backed Ravi Shastri staying on as the Team India coach while addressing his news briefing ahead of the squad's departure for the West Indies. Kohli's statement and the fact that he was allowed to make it were heavily debated.
Under Shastri, India have won over 70% of their matches. These victories include whitewashing Sri Lanka in their own backyard in Tests, ODI's and T20Is in the 2017/18 season, home series win against Australia and New Zealand, limited-overs bilateral series wins against South Africa, Asia Cup 2018, the historic Test series wins against Australia Down Under followed by bilateral ODI series wins against the Aussies and the Kiwis. Away Test series losses against South Africa and England, losing to Australia at home earlier this year and a semi-final exit in World Cup 2019 are something which was witnessed during his tenure.
In the next two years i.e. from the 2019-2021 cycle, Team India will be taking part in two ICC World T20 tournaments apart from the ICC World Test Championship which kicks off from the upcoming West Indies tour. Next year, the International Cricket Council (ICC) will also begin the One-Day Championship.
Apart from Shastri, it has also been learned that bowling coach Bharat Arun might also be retained. Arun has played an instrumental role in nurturing the Indian pacers as a result of which they have become a world-class unit in all three formats of the game. It is unlikely that Sanjay Bangar will continue with his role as the batting coach as the board might look to rope in someone with a lot of innovative strategies. R Sridhar seems to be a top contender for the role of the fielding coach but at the same time, he has tough competition from Jonty Rhodes, who was arguably the best in the business during his playing days.
Reports had stated that former Sri Lankan skipper Mahela Jayawardene had also shown his interest for the position of Team India's head coach. However, sources have revealed that he had never applied for the position and will continue to serve the IPL franchise Mumbai Indians as their head coach.