Former captain Anil Kumble was today appointed the Indian cricket team’s head coach for a one-year tenure, bringing an end to the prolonged suspense over who will take over the reins of the side.
The 45-year-old Kumble pipped former Team Director Ravi Shastri, Australians Tom Moody and Stuart Law and a host of others to clinch the high-profile position following an elaborate selection process headed by a three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC).
The committee comprising greats Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly had interviewed 10 candidates for the job in Kolkata on Tuesday in a marathon session which lasted close to 10 hours.
“BCCI has been very transparent. We fixed a criteria.
There was the CAC as well. They have gone through the process, interviewed and recommended few names. After discussions with various stakeholders, we have decided that Anil Kumble will be the head coach of the Indian cricket team for the next one year,” BCCI President Anurag Thakur said in a press conference here.
“It is not about Indian or foreign, it is about who is best for the job. I think we have used the services of best players who have served Indian cricket. There was no such limitation that we have to have only an Indian coach. We wanted the best for the Indian team,” he added.
Kumble, the highest wicket-taker for India till date and third in the international list behind Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne, emerged as a front-runner in the last few days even though he has no experience in coaching in the international arena.
Kumble’s stint as a mentor with IPL teams such as Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians as well as his vast experience as an international cricketer might have tilted the scale in his favour.
The former leg-spinner played 132 Test matches and 271 ODIs in a career spanning close to two decades. Kumble finished his Test career with 619 scalps and accumulated 337 ODI wickets which put his combined tally at 956 in two formats. The leg-spinner was the only bowler after England’s Jim Laker to have taken all 10 wickets in a Test innings.