BCCI selectors to recruit coaching staff!

Once the Committee of Administrators (COA) goes into overdrive to put in place the Lodha Committee recommendations, the three-member senior national selection committee will have the responsibility of recommending the head coach and other support staff to the Apex Council.

As part of the reforms in the BCCI, the national selection committee will have the additional responsibility of recommending the head coach and other support staff to the Apex Council.   -  AFP

Former India captain Anil Kumble was chosen as the head coach of the Indian team last June for a 12-month period following a decision by the then BCCI president, Anurag Thakur, and secretary, Ajay Shirke. The three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), appointed by the late BCCI president, Jagmohan Dalmiya, was entrusted with the task of interviewing candidates for the post of India’s head coach. The CAC consisted of former India stars, Sachin Tendulkar, V. V. S. Laxman and Sourav Ganguly. Many former India and experienced first-class cricketers responded to the BCCI’s call for applications for the post of head coach, and some of them even confided how badly they were treated by the Board, which gave the applicants less than 12 hours to report for interviews in Mumbai.

In 2008, when the BCCI decided to pay the five selectors, it framed a rule that only international cricketers or those who have played 25 first-class matches would be considered for the job of a selector. From time to time, the Board’s Working Committee decided on the eligibility criteria for the selectors, and for eight years, it remained the same. Many BCCI members still do not know who decided to bring in the age cap of 60 years.

“The BCCI violated its own rules by not bringing the age cap of 60 years for discussion at the Working Committee meeting. It was never discussed,’’ a former Board member said.

As per the Board’s rules, Jatin Paranjape and Gagan Khoda would have remained in the national selection committee; so would have Aashish Kapoor and Amit Sharma in the junior national selection panel. However, in the wake of the Justice Lodha Committee recommendations, and post Supreme Court order of January 2, Paranjape and Khoda were removed from the senior selection committee, while Kapoor and Sharma were eased out of the junior selection committee. Whether it was a correct decision on the part of the BCCI CEO is debatable because the Board’s Memorandum of Association, Rules and Regulations have not been amended yet. Hence, it can be said that the decision with regard to the four selectors was harsh and unfair. It was not their fault that they were chosen as selectors after an elaborate process.

Now, once the Committee of Administrators (COA) goes into overdrive to put in place the Lodha Committee recommendations, the three-member senior national selection committee will have the responsibility of recommending the head coach and other support staff to the Apex Council.

The selection committees are defined as “Cricket Committees’’ as per the reforms in the cricket report. It says: “The men’s selection committee shall select the senior national team for representation in Tests, one-day internationals, Twenty-20 and any other format. This committee shall also be responsible for vetting and selecting coaches and support staff (physiotherapists, trainers, therapists, analysts and medics) for the respective teams, as well as providing evaluation reports of the respective team’s performances to the Apex Council on a quarterly basis.”

The junior national selection committee has been re-named as “The Junior Cricket Committee’’. Its responsibilities include: 1) vetting and selecting coaches and support staff (physiotherapists, trainers, therapists, analysts and medics) for the respective teams, as well as providing evaluation reports of the respective team’s performances to the Apex Council on a quarterly basis, 2) organising and conducting junior tournaments of the BCCI, 3) organising junior tours of foreign countries, 4) deciding any dispute in regard to junior tournaments, and 5) inculcating proper ethics in the youth, particularly through interactions with senior and former players on issues such as drugs, betting, match-fixing, etc.”

The women’s selection committee has also been given the responsibility of vetting and selecting coaches and support staff (physiotherapists, trainers, therapists, analysts and medics) for the respective teams, as well as providing evaluation reports of the respective team’s performances to the Apex Council on a monthly basis.

The Lodha Committee has taken the right decision to select the coaching and other support staff from the BCCI.

However, a long time administrator pointed out: “I do not know if it’s the right decision because the aggregate salary of the coaching and support staff runs into several crores of rupees. There are financial implications.’’

The Lodha Committee has also said that one of the functions of the CEO would be to appoint team officials for the Indian squads which shall compulsorily include qualified coaches, managers, physiotherapists, nutritionists, trainers, analysts, counsellors and medics. With no permanent manager in place now, the BCCI CEO, Rahul Johri, may look to appoint one or recommend a name to the COA.

What is in favour of the Apex Council is that, “It shall exercise superintendence over the CEO, the Cricket Committees and the Standing Committees in the discharge of their duties generally, and in particular, in accordance with any general or special direction of the General Body, except for the Governing Council of the IPL, which is directly accountable to the General Body.”

The Indian cricket fans, however, would be curious to know how the selection committees would go about its business of finding the coaching and support staff.