Kumble among five shortlisted for interview

The BCCI's cricket advisory committee comprising Sourav Ganguly, VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar will take the interview of the shortlisted 21 candidates. Tendulkar will join in from London via video conference.

Spin great Anil Kumble incidentally does not meet all the criteria. He has not coached any international or first-class team, nor has he passed any course from the National Cricket Academy.   -  K. Bhagya Prakash

India is all but sure to have an Indian head coach. As the search for India’s new Head Coach enters the final phase, the coach recommendation panel is set to interview five candidates in Kolkata on Tuesday to zero in on the suitable candidate for the most sought-after job in the game.

The coach recommendation panel, consisting of eminent cricketers Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, VVS Laxman along with cricketer-turned administrator Sanjay Jagdale, has understood to have trimmed the list of 57 applicants to five.

According to a source close to the committee, the five candidates are Ravi Shastri, whose term as team director ended in March, chief selector Sandeep Patil, former India captain Anil Kumble, former India cricket manager Lalchand Rajput and former India A coach Praveen Amre.

Sportstar understands that barring Kumble, who has not had experience of coaching an international or first-class team, the other four candidates are from the list of 21 candidates who had been shortlisted last week. Kumble has been invited based on his rich experience and expertise, as unanimously agreed by the recommendation panel.

There was a lot of ambiguity over whether the recommendation panel will interact with each of the shortlisted candidates but the doubts have been put to rest with Tuesday’s plan of action. It is understood that the panel considered credentials and expertise of all the 57 candidates and zeroed in of these five names.

While Ganguly, Laxman and Jagdale will be present in Kolkata for conducting the interviews, Tendulkar will participate through video-conferencing. Even Shastri is likely to interact with the committee through video-conferencing. Each candidate is expected to be interviewed for 30 to 45 minutes.

The committee had been asked to pass on its recommendation to BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke and president Anurag Thakur by June 22. The fact that all the five interviews will be conducted on Tuesday, it will be fair to expect the new coach to be unveiled during the BCCI working committee, to be held in Dharamsala on June 24.