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Gautam Gambhir's appointment as India head coach imminent, BCCI to interview only applicant for role

In a major development for Indian cricket, former opening batter and two-time IPL-winning captain Gautam Gambhir has been confirmed as the new head coach of the Indian cricket team. Following the BCCI's call for applications, Gambhir emerged as the sole candidate for the prestigious role. With Rahul Dravid set to step down after the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup, Gambhir is poised to lead India with hopes of securing their first ICC trophy since 2013.

Gautam Gambhir confirmed as India Head Coach after former players reject BCCI's offer osf
First Published Jun 18, 2024, 11:49 AM IST

Former opening batter Gautam Gambhir is poised to take on the role of head coach for the Indian cricket team, following a Zoom call with BCCI authorities to finalise his appointment. Gambhir emerged as the frontrunner for one of the most coveted jobs in cricket after the BCCI invited applications for the position. At 42, the two-time IPL-winning captain with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) is expected to be officially announced as Rahul Dravid's successor by the end of June.

Regardless of India's performance in the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup, Rahul Dravid and his coaching team will be stepping down after a 2.5-year tenure. Dravid succeeded Ravi Shastri, and if the current rumors hold, Gautam Gambhir will soon don the mantle of India's head coach. The expectations are high for Gambhir to lead India to their first ICC trophy since 2013, especially after his recent success in guiding KKR to their third IPL title. Gambhir joined KKR as a mentor following a mutual termination of his contract with Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) before the 2024 auction last December.

Jay Shah, the Honorary Secretary of the BCCI, is reportedly keen on bringing Gambhir on board, and recent reports have made his appointment even more likely.

Gautam Gambhir: The Sole Applicant for the India Head Coaching Job

A report surfaced early Tuesday indicating that Gautam Gambhir was the only former cricketer to apply for the head coaching job. At the very least, Gambhir appears to be the only relevant applicant who filled out the Google form provided by the BCCI, which had a deadline of May 27, the day after the IPL 2024 final.

Despite rumours that the BCCI had approached international candidates like Ricky Ponting, Justin Langer, and Stephen Fleming, all of whom publicly declined, Jay Shah clarified that the board would not be hiring any foreign coach. This clarification boosted Gambhir's chances of taking up the challenge. The same report revealed that Gambhir would soon appear before a Zoom call with the Cricket Advisory Committee's officials, who are expected to recommend him to the BCCI.

Selection Committee Updates

The BCCI Advisors, Ashok Malhotra, Jatin Paranjpe, and Sulakshana Naik, will also be interviewing candidates for the North Zone Selector position. The current selection committee includes Ajit Agarkar and Salil Ankola, both from the West Zone. Ankola, part of the 5-member team since Chetan Sharma's tenure, will be replaced by the new North Zone selector.

Potential Additions to the Coaching Staff

A recent report also suggested that Jonty Rhodes might join Gambhir's coaching staff as India's fielding coach. This addition would further strengthen the team's support structure under Gambhir's leadership.

With these developments, Gautam Gambhir's transition to the head coach role appears imminent, marking a new chapter for Indian cricket. The cricketing fraternity eagerly awaits official confirmation and the potential impact of Gambhir's coaching tenure on the Indian team.

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