BCCI confirms appointment of Team India support staff: Details here
Following the retention of Ravi Shastri as the head coach of Team India, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has now confirmed the appointment of its support staff. While Bharat Arun and R Sridhar have retained their roles as bowling and batting coach, the batting department sees a change. Vikram Rathour has replaced Sanjay Bangar as the batting coach. Here's more.
As far as the batting coach is concerned, BCCI chief selector MSK Prasad confirmed that Rathour was unanimously chosen for the role. Meanwhile, Rathour had previously applied for the role of batting consultant with the NCA. However, since his brother Ashish Kapoor is the chairman U-19 selection committee, conflict of interest denied him the role.
"He (Rathour) was the director of HPCA and he was also the coach of Punjab Ranji team. He was also the assistant coach (batting) of Kings XI Punjab, so he has got enough experience behind him," said Prasad on Rathour's coaching experience.
Considering the bowling coach, it was reported by PTI last month that Arun, in all likeliness, was to be retained for the role. It was so as he led the list, followed by Paras Mhambrey and Venkatesh Prasad. Notably, India's bowling has improved tremendously under him and is currently the number one bowling attack in world cricket, making Arun's retention inevitable.
Meanwhile, the fielding coach was a conspicuous one, as Sridhar surprisingly retained his role. Although he was a favorite for the role, he was expected to receive a tough competition from the South African fielding legend Jonty Rhodes. To make things even interesting, he did not even feature in the top three, as Arun was followed by Abhay Sharma and T Dilip in the list.
Rhodes was surprised after he did not make the cut for India's fielding coach. However, he was sure that Sridhar had outsmarted him in the interview as the current Indian fielders have worked under him considerably well, which is evident by their current performance. "I am expecting that from an interview point of view - he [Sridhar] kicked my butt," said Rhodes.
"As a fielding coach, I did a couple of years of coaching with the South African team till the 2007 World Cup. Since then, I have only worked in India. I am way more familiar with the cricketing set up in India," Rhodes added.
While Rathour prepares to take up the coaching role of Team India with the bat, the author welcomes the move. He also believes that India's batting needs an uplift since they have been struggling of late, especially the middle-order in ODIs. However, the author is in a split when it comes to the fielding department, and is marginally in favor of Rhodes over Sridhar.