Shastri future uncertain as BCCI invites applications for India coaching roles

By Sports Desk July 16, 2019

Ravi Shastri's future as India's head coach is uncertain after the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) invited applications for his role and a host of other positions within its coaching and support staff.

Interested applicants have until July 30 to apply for the roles of head coach, batting coach, bowling coach, fielding coach, physiotherapist, strength and conditioning coach and administrative manager.

The contracts of the existing coaching staff, led by Shastri, initially expired following the Cricket World Cup, which India exited at the semi-final stage courtesy of a surprise defeat to eventual runners-up New Zealand.

However, Shastri, batting coach Sanjay Bangar, bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach R Sridhar were handed extensions to cover India's tour of the West Indies in August.

In a statement, the BCCI confirmed "the current coaching staff of Team India (senior men) will get an automatic entry in the recruitment process".

The BCCI also revealed its eligibility criteria for those hoping to serve as head coach, a role the 57-year-old Shastri has held since 2017 after previously leading India as team director.

To stand a chance of being appointed, applicants must be under 60 years of age and boast at least two years of experience as head coach of a Test-playing nation or three years of experience at either Associate member, Indian Premier League, first-class or an equivalent level.

They should also have played in a minimum of 30 Test matches or 50 ODIs and hold a BCCI Level 3 certification or its equivalent.

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    In a performance that evoked memories of Botham's vintage 1981 innings in Leeds, Stokes tore into the Australian attack to transform a match that looked lost.

    England's hopeless 67 all out in their first innings left them well off the pace, and when Australia set them 359 to pull off victory it looked highly likely to be out of reach.

    When Stuart Broad was ninth man out on 286, England were still 73 short, but Stokes rose to the challenge.

    An innings that was built on a foundation of early patience transformed into a Stokes big-hitting masterclass as he repeatedly heaved Australian bowlers to the boundary, his 135 not out including 11 fours and eight sixes.

    "It takes a remarkable man," Botham said on Sky Sports. "I said this morning that somebody had to front up and somebody has to be strong.

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    Botham expressed his fear about the future of Test cricket, given the rise of the limited-overs game, but he believes performances such as that of Stokes can draw much-needed attention to the five-day format.

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    Former England opener Geoffrey Boycott said the "magical" innings was a highlight for him of a life watching cricket, calling it "the best I've seen in over 50 years".

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