Raman, Kirsten and Prasad shortlisted for Indian women's cricket team coach role

W. V. Raman, Gary Kirsten and Venkatesh Prasad have emerged as the front-runners for the post of the Indian women's cricket team coach.

Gary Kirsten was the Indian cricket team's coach when the side lifted the ICC World Cup in 2011.   -  Getty Images

The three-member ad-hoc committee, comprising Kapil Dev, Aunshuman Gaekwad and Shantha Rangaswamy, have shortlisted India's 2011 World Cup-winning coach Gary Kirsten, Venkatesh Prasad and W. V. Raman for the post of the Indian women's cricket team coach. The committee has submitted the names to the BCCI on Thursday.

After receiving 28 applications, the committee had pruned the list down to 11, and a total of nine interviews were held at the BCCI headquarters in Mumbai.

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According to sources, Kirsten was categorically asked in the interview whether he would be giving up on his job with Indian Premier League outfit Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). But he told the panel that he “would be happy with both” and insisted that the Board should talk to the franchise about the issue.

But during the IPL auctions held in Jaipur on Tuesday, RCB bosses had made it clear that they would continue with Kirsten. In that case, Kirsten falls in the conflict of interest clause and may not be considered for the job.

Officials further indicated that if Kirsten is out of the race, Raman stands as the favourite as the women cricketers “preferably want” a batsman as the coach. A final decision is expected within next couple of days.

- Kapil interviews Prabhakar -

While former India cricketers -- WV Raman, Manoj Prabhakar and Ramesh Powar -- attended the interview in person, four applicants, including Kirsten and Herschelle Gibbs, Prasad and Dimitri Mascarenhas gave the interview via Skype. The lone woman candidate, Kalpana Venkatachar, was interviewed over the phone.

Powar, whose contract ended on November 30 leading to the interviews, did not make the cut.

Mark Coles, who is associated with the Pakistan’s women's team, and Ireland’s Trent Johnston, skipped the interview.

“We have submitted three options to the BCCI. Now, it’s up to the Board (to take a call),” committee member, Gaekwad, told Sportstar.

After Prabhakar was chosen for the interview, there were speculations on whether Kapil would be present for the session. However, Kapil was a part of the interview panel when Prabhakar presented his case. Prabhakar later said Kapil "asked him a few questions" during the interview.

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Former team-mates, Kapil and Prabhakar, share a strained relationship after Prabhakar had accused Kapil of match-fixing, but the 1983 World Cup winning captain was cleared of all charges.

Some Board officials, however, have opinioned that if the three-member committee was formed just to conduct interviews of eligible candidates and not pick the coach, then the 'process' defeats the purpose.