Sportstar Aces Awards: Coach of the Year

Our nominees Rahul Dravid, Pullela Gopi Chand and Massimo Costantini have helped mould champions. What makes them stand apart?

Published : Jan 31, 2019 19:21 IST

Rahul Dravid has played a key role in creating a talent pool.
Rahul Dravid has played a key role in creating a talent pool.

Rahul Dravid has played a key role in creating a talent pool.


This has been a year to remember for India U-19 and A team coach, Rahul Dravid. The former Indiacaptain guided the U-19 team to its World Cup win in February. Later, he guided the India A team towins in England. He has played a key role in creating a talent pool.


India shuttlers P.V. Sindhu (left) and Saina Nehwal with national coach Pullela Gopichand.

Pullela Gopi Chand (Badminton)

Over the years, Pullela Gopichand has made it a habit to produce champions. As the head coach of the country’s badminton team, Gopichand has played a key role in the team’s success in major championships. At the Commonwealth, India had the maximum number of medals in badminton, winning two gold medals ( Saina in women and mixed team gold), three silver (Sindhu, Srikanth and men’s doubles team of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty) and one bronze (women’s doubles team of Ashwini Ponnappa and Sikki Reddy).

India also clinched a silver (Sindhu) and bronze ( Saina) at the Asian Games this year. Sindhu broke her finals jinx of sorts by winning the BWF World Tour Finals title in December.


Massimo Costantini with Manika Batra during the Commonwealth Games 2018. (File Image)


Massimo Costantini returned for a second stint as India coach in 2016 after India's disastrous performance at the Rio Olympics. Under him, India won eight medals at the Commonwealth Games this year and further made history by winning two medals at the Asian Games.

Manika Batra, G. Sathiyan and Sharath Kamal also attained their best-ever ranking this year. India was keen on extending his contract until 2020 Olympics, but Costantini decided to return home to Italy after the Asian Games He took up the role of ITTF's High Performance Director after leaving the India job.


Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment