Millennium Post

Anil Kumble steps down as India coach

Anil Kumble has stepped down as coach of the Indian cricket team after he decided not to accompany the Indian team to the West Indies for a limited-overs series starting June 23, citing commitment to an ICC meeting. Kumble is a part of ICC's cricket committee and has reportedly sent his resignation to BCCI CEO.

It was being widely perceived in the BCCI that after a meeting between India captain Virat Kohli and Cricket Advisory Committee, comprising — Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman — the skipper made it clear that his relationship with the coach has reached a dead end.

During the entire Champions Trophy, there was hardly any communication between the two during the practice session with chief coach mostly keeping to himself or giving some practice to the bowlers.

India will play five one-day internationals in the Caribbean starting June 23, with a Twenty20 international wrapping up the trip on July 9.

Rumours of a rift between Indian skipper Kohli and Kumble were reported to be behind the BCCI throwing open the position.

Former India greats Tendulkar, Ganguly and Laxman have been tasked with selecting the next coach.

COA chief Vinod Rai, whose special committee was assigned by the Supreme Court to oversee the scandal-ridden cricket board, dismissed allegations of a spat between Kumble and Kohli.

The BCCI decision to not renew the one-year long contract of Kumble as the coach and inviting fresh applications also stoked up the ember.

Kumble has had a very successful stint as coach, with India winning 12 and losing just one of the 17 Tests in which he has been in charge. He would ordinarily have been expected to get an automatic extension, if not for Kohli's views, which BCCI refuses to make public.

A BCCI official said that CEO Rahul Johri had offered Kumble a small extension but he said no to it.

"BCCI CEO Rahul Johri had offered Kumble a two-week extension till the time there cold have more clarity in the matter, but he refused to take it," said the source to a cricket website.

Interestingly, it was also learnt that the players waited for Kumble at the airport in England before leaving for the Caribbean but he never showed up. Kumble did not accompany the Indian team citing the ICC Annual Conference that started on Monday and will continue till June 23.

For the coach's job, apart from Sehwag, Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody, Englishman Richard Pybus, Afghanistan coach Lalchand Rajput and Dodda Ganesh have applied for the job.

News also came in that former Australia pacer Craig McDermott had applied for the India coach's job, but won't be eligible for the interview as his application came to the BCCI email id after the deadline.
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