Rahul Dravid, BCCI engage in discussion but board inclined towards new coach

NEW DELHI: The top brass of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Rahul Dravid engaged in extensive discussions regarding his potential continuation as the head coach, keeping the fast approaching T20I World Cup in mind.
However the board’s inclination seems to be leaning towards appointing a new individual with the current NCA Director VVS Laxman emerging as a strong contender.
Dravid’s initial two-year contract as India’s head coach concluded after the recent World Cup final where Rohit Sharma’s and co. faced a disappointing six-wicket loss to Australia.
Since then, debates have been ongoing regarding Dravid’s future role as the helm of the Indian cricket.
“Rahul and the BCCI had a talk about where things stand now. We will respect the decision taken by him. The general feeling is that with the T20 World Cup about 7-8 months away, there is time for a new coach to come in and build a team and set a process. He (Dravid) is quite aware of that,” a BCCI official close to the development told PTI on condition of anonymity.
The official said a decision will be reached only after thoroughly thinking about all angles.
“We are also talking about whether continuity (current coach/captain combination) is needed for the (T20) WC. We are hoping to reach a decision soon so that path forward is clear,” he added.
It is also understood that the board is quite happy with the way Dravid has managed the team along with captain Rohit over the last two years despite not landing any global trophies
The pair has guided India to the semifinals of the T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia and finals of the World Test Championship 2023 in England and the 50-over World Cup at home.
However, India won the Asia Cup beating Sri Lanka by 10 wickets in Colombo in September under their regime.
The official hinted that all the stakeholders involved including Rohit, chief selector Ajit Agarkar and a few other higher BCCI office-bearers will sit together soon to arrive at a final call.
VVS Laxman, the current NCA chief, is tipped to succeed Dravid as India head coach, and the official said they have kept their options open.
“Options are open (for head coach). He (Laxman) is familiar with the team, players and the methods. He also has experience working with the national team,” he explained.

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Laxman is currently with the Indian team as head coach for the five-match T20I series against Australia, and the former Indian batter has often stepped in for Dravid in the past whenever the latter was given a rest.
(With inputs from PTI)

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