As per BCCI internal sources, the current Indian head coach Ravi Shastri has expressed his desire to step down after the World T20I in Oct – Nov 2021. Ravi, now 59 has held this spot continuously since mid-2017.
With Shastri willing to move on, discussions are on as to who should replace him as the next coach. The public favourite Rahul Dravid has already played himself out of the contention by reapplying for the Head of operations of NCA for another 2 years which means he is not inclined for too much travel and is willing to support Indian cricket from the background by bringing up new youngsters in the cricket circuit.
With Dravid out of contention, the name that is doing the rounds is of current batting coach Vikram Rathour. Rathour does not have a great cricket pedigree like Shastri having played in only a handful of tests for India and averaging 13. However, he was a very fine domestic and Ranji cricketer averaging in the high 40s.
However , a strong international career is not a required parameter for any individual to succeed as a head coach.
Currently, Rathour is the Team India batting coach and hence is well acquainted with the team environment. He knows the players well personally which is an added advantage. His equation with the India captain is also said to be very good which is a strong prerequisite for any existing member of the coaching staff to elevate to a head coach post.
Noted senior cricket journalist Vijay Lokapalli has also tweeted that he is hearing the name of Vikram Rathour as the next coach.
So far there has not been any indication from BCCI that they are looking for any overseas coach. However, with India playing back to back international matches, a clearer picture should emerge as we reach towards the end of Shastri’s coaching tenure.