The Board of Cricket Council of India (BCCI) president Anurag Thakur on the eve of June 23, 2016 in Dharamsala finally raised the curtain on who will be the new coach for the Indian cricket team. As per the expectations of everyone Anil Kumble was selected as the head coach for the senior cricket team for one year tenure.
“BCCI has been very transparent. We fixed criteria. There was the CAC as well. They have gone through the process, interviewed and recommended few names. After discussions with various stakeholders, we have decided that Anil Kumble will be the head coach of the Indian cricket team for the next one year,” Thakur told reporters.
Although Kumble didn’t have any prior coaching experience at A class or at international level, still he was favored by the three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), which included his former team-mates Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman because of his immense knowledge.
“Jumbo” as Kumble is referred to, will take the charge of team India from 9 July, with a beginning of a four-match Test series against West Indies and will be running his campaign till until ICC Champions Trophy, which will be held in England.
Anurag Thakur also revealed that the legendary leg-spinner was not the first choice for the job, instead, he wanted the former Indian batting legend Rahul Dravid “The Wall” to coach the team but, he wanted to work with the junior team and nurture their talent.
Thakur was quoted saying, “I requested Rahul Dravid to coach the Indian team. He didn’t say no, but said that he will work for the junior team.”
“That is the good thing about Dravid. He didn’t go for the senior team post, big money and all. He wanted to work for the junior cricketers and not the senior team,” he commented.
Kumble was selected from the 57 candidates who had applied for the job, beating the likes of Ravi Shastri, Pravin Tambe, Australians Tom Moody, Stuart Law and others to become the coach. His experience of playing 18 years of international cricket played a big role in his selection.