Top 5 contenders to become Team India’s new head coach

Top 5 contenders to become Team India’s new head coach

The Board of Control for Cricket in India announced the opening for the position of head coach for the Indian Senior National Team this week. The new head coach’s tenure will start on 1 July 2024, and they will be part of the national team until 31 December 2027, which includes major ICC Tournaments like the Champions Trophy in 2025 and the ODI World Cup 2027. 

Current Head Coach Rahul Dravid is unlikely to continue further as the Man in Charge of the Indian Team posts the T20 World Cup in the Caribbean and USA. His tenure ended after the ODI World Cup in November, but the BCCI decided to continue with him till the T20 World Cup later in July. Under Dravid, India could not win any ICC Trophy as the jinx continued. The team fared well overall, reaching the semi-final of the 2022 T20 World Cup and the Final of the 2023 ODI World Cup. Yet, under his tenure, India was not able to capitalize on the home World Cup. So, everyone is keen to see who will replace the Indian veteran. 

In this article, let us discuss the top 5 possible candidates who could take over the Indian Cricket Team after Rahul Dravid’s tenure: 

VVS Laxman

VVS Laxman is the front-runner to be in charge of the national side after the T20 World Cup. The Hyderabad batter has experience coaching at a higher level. Laxman was part of the Indian team that won the Gold Medal in the 2022 Asian Games held in China. He has coached the senior national team a couple of times in Rahul Dravid’s absence. 

Laxman also has experience mentoring Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL. He took the Orange Army to the finals of the IPL in 2016 and 2018. For the last three years, VVS Laxman has served as the head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA), where he’s been directing the growth of the upcoming generation of Indian cricketers via the board’s pathways program. 

However, recent reports suggested that he is unlikely to apply for the head coach position on the senior side. It will be interesting to see how things pan out in the future. 

Ricky Ponting

Ricky Ponting is another name that is a highly talked about candidate to replace Rahul Dravid as the Indian Head Coach. The great Australian needs no introduction. He is probably the best tactician in world cricket. Ponting’s coaching journey with the Capitals, which commenced in 2018, has been notably successful. Before his current stint, Ponting played a pivotal role with the Mumbai Indians from 2014 to 2016, guiding them to an IPL title victory in 2015. Ponting can mould the group of youngsters and make them a finished product. 

With his excellent relationship with Rishabh Pant and the current Indian young group, he can be roped in as the Head Coach of the senior side. Maybe appointing Ponting would end India’s trophy drought. In a recent interview, Ponting showed his keenness to become the head coach of the Indian side. 

Justin Langer

Justin Langer has been the pioneer of the current resurgence in Australian Cricket. He led the Australian team to a victory in the 2021 T20 World Cup and also drew the Ashes in England in 2019. Being an astute learner of the game and a wise tactician, the Australian Opener is a respected figure in the cricket community. He is currently mentoring the Lucknow Super Giants in TATA IPL 2024. 

With India unable to win an ICC Trophy for more than a decade, appointing Justin Langer would bring out the best in the team. He could instil fearlessness in the team and create a winning mindset amongst the group. With his technical astuteness, he could nurture the Indian youngsters in this transition phase. 

Gautam Gambhir 

The former Indian opener is a fierce competitor on and off the field. The Delhi Southpaw has led the Kolkata Knight Riders to victory in the 2012 and 2014 editions of the Indian Premier League. Known for his man management skills, Gautam Gambhir has brought the best out of individuals. He is currently the head coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders and has been formidable in helping KKR reach the playoffs with ease, finishing in the top 2. In the previous 2 editions of the IPL, Gambhir helped the young Lucknow Super Giants reach the playoffs twice in two consecutive years. 

He backs players from the word go, and his straightforward approach will help the Indian side reach new heights in world cricket. 

Stephen Fleming

Stephen Fleming, current coach of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK), is a prime candidate for the position of India’s head coach. With five IPL titles, his coaching prowess is undeniable, establishing CSK as an IPL powerhouse. He has been one of the best male managers and has a knack for understanding the mindset of the players. His calmness might bring stability to the team and help India maintain composure in crunch times. However, concerns loom over the demanding schedule of the national team’s coach, causing reluctance from franchises to release their successful mentors.

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