Anil Kumble appears to have decided to walk away as India coach at the end of the ICC Champions Trophy campaign when his one-year contract will come to an end.
With reports of major differences between Kumble and skipper Virat Kohli having marred the build-up to India’s opening match against arch-rivals Pakistan at Edgbaston, Birmingham on Sunday, there were indications that efforts for any patch up had not borne fruit.
Although the BCCI has given Kumble direct entry while seeking applications for a new coach, it was learnt on Friday that the BCCI may not renew the contract of India’s leading Test bowler despite his doing an excellent job since taking over as India coach in July 2016.
It is understood that given the current mood within the team, Kumble may even opt out of the race at the end of India’s campaign in the tournament in UK. According to sources, after failing in the initial bid to bring about a patch up between Kohli and Kumble, effort currently is on by the BCCI officials in England and the Cricket Advisory Committee (Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman) to keep Kumble and skipper Kohli on the same page till the tournament is over, and ensure the two handle the issue in a professional manner.
Ramchandra Guha, who resigned from the COA on Thursday, was scathing in his remark with the way Kohli-Kumble issue was handled.
The Indian coach-captain saga has been the talking point in the team’s preparation for the crucial ICC Champions Trophy.
Former India skipper Nari Contractor said it was mistake to have given only a one-year contract to Kumble in the first place. “What will a coach do in one year’s time? By the time he identifies the back-up players and tries to implement his vision, his tenure is coming to an end. A national team coach’s tenure should be a minimum two to three years,” said Contractor.
He also slammed the timing of Kohli making his displeasure clear about Kumble.