Former India captain Rahul Dravid may have politely turned down the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) when he was approached to the next head coach of the Indian men’s team after Ravi Shastri but he may well be seen as an interim coach for the second time this year. Dravid was the interim coach of the limited-overs Indian side which toured Sri Lanka earlier this year with Shastri in charge of the Test side in England.
Current head coach Shastri and his support staff’s tenure will come to an end after the T20 World Cup 2021, but the BCCI has realised the search for a new coach could take longer than expected. As a result they want National Cricket Academy (NCA) chief Dravid in charge for the New Zealand home series, which starts just three days after the T20 World Cup final on November 17, according to report in the Indian Express newspaper.
According to the newspaper, a few Australian coaches expressed interest in the job, but the BCCI isn’t keen as they are focussing on an Indian for the role, before they look elsewhere. The BCCI had wanted Dravid to become the full-time coach of the Indian team but he had refused.
The Indian board later approached a few more coaches but are yet to get a positive response. The BCCI has not officially put out an advertisement for the coach but have been looking around for a candidate to replace Shastri.
“We wanted the candidate whom we feel is best suited for the job to agree first (to apply for the job),” a BCCI official was quoted as saying by the Indian Express. “We don’t want a situation where we get applications but no one is seen as ideal. It will be embarrassing for the board and for the candidates too. So it’s better to find a suitable candidate first, till then Dravid can be interim coach,” a BCCI official added.
The BCCI also considered the possibility of requesting Shastri to continue till the New Zealand series but have changed their mind. Dravid has coached the second-string Indian team in Sri Lanka when the main team were concurrently playing in Australia earlier this year. India are scheduled to play two Tests and three T20s against New Zealand.