Sunday, 24 September, 2017

CAC’s no-ball

Not selecting a coach before major tour a bewildering decision

11th July 2017, 10:35 Hrs
Monday was a big day for the Indian cricket fan -- or it was supposed to be. With the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) set to pick the new head coach for the men’s team, fans eagerly awaited the big announcement. However, the CAC’s decision to put on hold the appointment for the high-profile post has come as a big surprise, and a disappointment to many. rIt is a bewildering decision as the team would now travel to Sri Lanka for a full-fledged tour -- starting July 26 -- without a head coach. The three-member CAC -- comprising of Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman -- has said it needs more time to finalise the selection. Ganguly, who spoke to the media about the committee’s decision, said the three legends will speak to the India captain Virat Kohli before picking Anil Kumble’s successor. rThe panel which interviewed five candidates -- including front-runners Ravi Shastri and Tom Moody -- reasoned that they did not want to make a rushed decision without speaking at length to the stakeholders who would be working with the coach after the appointment was made. rThe decision means the cricket board will extend the interim arrangement, with batting coach Sanjay Bangar likely to continue as interim head coach. However, the theatre of the absurd that is BCCI, it cannot be ruled out that they might work out a new arrangement in the spirit of the “Indian jugaad”. rThe fact that the CAC has taken too long to decide on who to pick in the key, all-important role, again highlights the ‘conflict of interest’ issue in Indian cricket. The CAC -- with all due respect to the legends for their contribution to the game -- has not done its job. rOne can say that it’s symptomatic of how the Indian cricket administration works -- delay it if you can’t decide. Whatever the reason, at the end of the day, it’s the cricketers who are left in the limbo. It fuels anxiety and results in divided loyalties -- so much so that even a man of Kumble’s stature has to step aside despite delivering results. The CAC has taken its time. Now, it needs to deliver and find the person who can fill the big shoes of the legend.

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