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Shastri, Zaheer, Dravid in India’s new coaching team

CricketShastri, Zaheer, Dravid in India's new coaching team

Ravi Shastri, the former India allrounder and team director, has been appointed head coach of the national side until the 2019 World Cup. Zaheer Khan has been named bowling coach, while Rahul Dravid will be the team’s batting consultant on overseas tours.shastri dravid zaheer

Their first assignment will be the Test series in Sri Lanka, which begins on July 26.

The announcement was made late on Tuesday night after the CoA impressed upon the BCCI’s Cricket Advisory Committee, comprising Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendullkar and VVS Laxman, the urgency of the need to end the uncertainty over the next India coach.

The vacancy arose after Anil Kumble resigned after the Champions Trophy in June, stating his partnership with India captain Virat Kohli had become “untenable”. India went to the West Indies to play a limited-overs series without a head coach.

Shastri was one of five candidates the CAC interviewed for the role, along with Virender Sehwag, Tom Moody, Richard Pybus and Lalchand Rajput. Shastri had not applied when the BCCI invited applications for the first time, but he did so after Kumble was not in the fray anymore.

Shastri had applied for the role in 2016 as well, and was disappointed to lose out to Kumble, because India had done well during his tenure as director. Shastri had been appointed team director in August 2014 and under him, India made it to semi-finals of successive global events – the 2015 World Cup and the 2016 World T20 – and also climbed to No. 1 on the Test rankings for a period of eight weeks until February 2016. During that period, India also won their first limited-overs bilateral series in Australia, whitewashing the hosts 3-0 in a T20I series. While he worked alongside Duncan Fletcher in the early part of his tenure, Shastri had sole responsibility after the 2015 World Cup.

Zaheer has no formal coaching experience but he has been part of the Delhi Daredevils thinktank in recent IPL seasons. Dravid recently gave up his position as the Daredevils mentor, after accepting a two-year contract to coach the India A and Under-19 teams.

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