The Committee of Administrators (CoA) on Saturday said the Indian cricket team’s support staff will be recruited after consultation with head coach Ravi Shastri by July 22, effectively putting on hold Zaheer Khan and Rahul Dravid’s appointments.
In a meeting attended by CoA members Vinod Rai, Diana Edulji and BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, the CoA approved the appointment of Shastri. However, the committee did not implicitly specify whether Dravid and Khan were on board as consultants for specific overseas tours, as had been claimed by the BCCI. As per the minutes of the meeting, the ‘appointments of other consultants will be decided by the committee in consultation with the head coach’.
Reacting sharply to this development, former CoA member Ramachandra Guha expressed his disappointment at the way at the ‘public humiliation’ faced by Kumble, Dravid and Zaheer. “The shameful treatment of Anil Kumble has now been compounded by the cavalier treatment of Zaheer Khan and Rahul Dravid,” Guha wrote on Twitter. “Kumble, Dravid and Zaheer were true greats of the game who gave it all on the field. They did not deserve this public humiliation,” he added.
This is, of course, not the first time Guha has spoken out against the functioning within the BCCI. While resigning as a member of the CoA, the historian had slammed the ‘superstar culture’ prevalent in Indian cricket, while also targeting the likes of Sunil Gavaskar of ‘conflict of interest’.
The CoA has formed a four-member panel, which includes acting Board President CK Khanna and CEO Rahul Johri, to decide on the remuneration of newly-appointed head coach Shastri and other members of the support staff.
Edulji and BCCI acting Secretary Amitabh Choudhary are the other members of the committee which will meet on July 19.
This was decided after a CoA meeting on Saturday. The new committee will reach out to CoA with its recommendations on July 22, three days after the team leaves for the Sri Lanka tour on July 19.
“We have taken all the recommendations of the CAC for Ravi Shastri as head coach and we will further discuss with him appointment of other coaches. We have set up a committee and they will speak to them (CAC), communicate with them after talking to Shastri. The support staff has been decided in consultation with the head coach,” Rai told reporters after the meeting.
“Three appointments which are core to the coaching team have been decided. But we have to consult each one of them, we have to ascertain their willingness and have to ensure that there is no conflict of interest issue.”
The three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) had named Shastri as head coach while Dravid and Khan were appointed batting and bowling consultants respectively for specific overseas tours. However, the CoA clarified that they (Zaheer and Dravid) were mere recommendations and appointments.
“There is no such thing as contract as yet. It’s only a recommendation. It’s not an appointment. A recommendation has been made and the CoA has to act on the recommendation, that recommendation will be acted upon in consultation with the head coach.”
India will play the first Test against Sri Lanka on July 26. Asked about the CAC letter expressing “pain” at the perception that appointments of Dravid and Zaheer were forced upon Shastri, Rai said, “CAC has done a lot of correspondences with the CEO and with me also. And we have reacted to each one of those things.”
An advertisement for Indian senior team manager will be released immediately. Similarly, an advertisement for managers of A team and U-19 team will also be released.