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5 Names who can replace Rahul Dravid as India Head Coach: Who’s Next?

5 Names who can replace Rahul Dravid as India Head Coach: Who’s Next? (Photo Source: X(Twitter)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) recently invited applications for the coveted role of new senior men’s head coach role. Current head coach, Rahul Dravid’s tenure will end after the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2024.

Under Dravid, India went to the finals of the World Test Championship 2023, the semi-finals of the 2022 T20 World Cup, won the Asia Cup 2023, and reached the finals of the ODI World Cup. However, there are reports that Dravid might not take back the role of India’s head coach for another term. In the past, India has seen some foreign coaches who have achieved huge success. 

BCCI secretary Jay Shah confirmed that the head coach can be domestic or international. India may opt for a foreign head coach after almost a decade. Notable successes under previous foreign coaches like John Wright, Gary Kirsten, and Duncan Fletcher make this prospect more attractive.

Also read: BCCI invites applications for the position of India Head Coach for Senior Men’s Team

Here are the top five probable names who could be apt for the head coach post

5. VVS Laxman:

VVS Laxman (as NCA head) ( Source : BCCI )

The former Indian cricketer and head of the National Cricket Academy, VVS Laxman was initially considered as a potential successor to Rahul Dravid for the role of Indian head coach. Laxman has had prior experience coaching the national team in Dravid’s absence, leading India to victory at the 2022 Asian Games in China and a 4-1 victory in the home T20I series in 2023 following the ODI World Cup.

Additionally, he has IPL coaching experience as well, guiding Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the 2016 edition and as runners-up in the 2018 season. He is one of the strong contenders to secure the spot.

4. Gautam Gambhir:

Gautham Gambhir ( Source : IPL )

Gautam Gambhir, the former Indian batting stalwart, can also be a strong contender for the role of India’s head coach. In his illustrious playing career, he has had experience being part of title-winning teams. As a skipper, he lifted the IPL title twice for Kolkata Knight Riders and was part of India’s historic victories in the 2011 ODI World Cup and the 2007 T20 World Cup.

Gambhir’s coaching skills have been evident in the IPL, where he served as the mentor for Lucknow Super Giants, guiding them to playoff qualifications in their inaugural two seasons. His recent move to KKR has shown remarkable results, with the team becoming the first to secure a playoff berth and currently sitting atop the points table under his mentorship. 

Also read: BCCI chews over Stephen Fleming’s appointment as Head Coach of Team India

3. Stephen Fleming:

Stephen Fleming (as CSK coach) ( Source : IPL )

Stephen Fleming, the current coach of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK), is another formidable candidate being considered by the BCCI for the role of India’s head coach. Fleming’s association with CSK has seen huge success, leading the team to an impressive five IPL titles since the inception of the tournament in 2008.

His skills as a coach and man-manager have been evident in CSK’s consistent performances over the years, establishing them as one of the most successful franchises in the IPL. However, the demanding commitment required for the national team’s head coach position, spanning nearly 10 months annually, has raised concerns from the respective franchises, who are reluctant to part ways with their successful mentors.

2. Justin Langer:

Justin Langer (as Australia coach)( Source : Aussies )

Justin Langer, the former Australian cricketer and coach, emerges as a good option for the role. His impressive coaching tenure with the Australian men’s team from 2018-2022 shows his capabilities in this role. Langer oversaw the team’s revival after the Sandpaper scandal and guided them to their first T20 World Cup title in 2021. His man-management skills and ability to put up a winning culture drew immense praise. Currently, serving as the head coach of LSG in the IPL, Langer has shown his adaptability and knack for nurturing talent. 

Also read: Justin Langer shows interest for India head coach job

1. Ricky Ponting:

Ricky Ponting (as DC coach) ( Source : DC )

Former Australian captain and current head coach of Delhi Capitals, Ricky Ponting, is a formidable contender for the crucial role of India’s head coach. Ponting’s coaching stint with DC since 2018 has seen a good amount of success. Before his current role, Ponting’s association with Mumbai Indians from 2014 to 2016, including an IPL title victory in 2015. With his extensive involvement in Indian cricket, both as a player and coach, Ponting brings a wealth of experience and an in-depth understanding of the subcontinent’s cricketing culture.

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