Former England batsmen Mark Ramprakash and Jonathan Trott have emerged as high-profile candidates for the role of India’s batting coach as the BCCI interviews numerous aspirants to appoint support staff this week. The board has started the recruitment process to find batting, bowling and fielding coaches for the men’s team and the interviews are scheduled to take place from Monday to Thursday.
Ramprakash and Trott are understood to have been interviewed along with other candidates that include Thilan Samaraweera, Pravin Amre, Amol Muzumdar, Hrishikesh Kanitkar and Vikram Rathour. Former South Africa batsman Jonty Rhodes, who was the fielding coach of Mumbai Indians in the IPL until recently, and Ant Botha, who represented South Africa Under-19s before moving to England, have applied for the post of fielding coach. For the bowling coach position, Venkatesh Prasad, Sunil Joshi, Amit Bhandari and Paras Mhambrey are understood to have applied.
The contracts of the head coach and the assistant coaches ended after the World Cup in July before they were all given extensions for the ongoing tour of the USA and the West Indies. The BCCI has since extended Ravi Shastri’s contract as head coach for another two years.
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The selection panel will send its shortlist of the final choices for the three positions to the board, which can involve the head coach before making the appointment. It is believed that Shastri is likely to stick with his existing support staff – Sanjay Bangar (assistant coach), Bharat Arun (bowling) and R Sridhar (fielding) – all three being automatic entries in the recruitment process. These three men were handpicked by Shastri in 2014 when he joined the Indian dressing room as the team director. All three continued to hold on to their positions even during Shastri’s one-year absence in 2016-17 when Anil Kumble was the head coach.
Trott, meanwhile, has been invited to apply for the batting coach role with England Under-19s and England Lions. He is currently in a temporary role as batting coach at Kent, though he had a brief stint with the England Test side ahead of the Test against Ireland at Lord’s a few weeks ago.
Interest in Ramprakash and Trott comes at a time when English coaches appear to be somewhat undervalued at home. The status of England coaches, however, does appear higher overseas. Paul Farbrace, the former England assistant coach, was also approached by both Sri Lanka and Bangladesh – he declined both – while Michael Yardy, the former England allrounder, was recently appointed as New South Wales’ batting coach. Peter Moores is also understood to have been the subject of interest from South Africa in recent weeks, though he has declined to confirm the approach.
With additional inputs from Nagraj Gollapudi