India’s cricket board on Thursday (25) invited applications for a new head coach, as Anil Kumble’s contract draws rapidly to a close.
The former Test captain was appointed coach in June 2016 for a year but will automatically be considered for a renewed term.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has given other interested parties until May 31 to put in their resumes.
“The process has been initiated since the term of the current coach, Mr. Anil Kumble concludes with the Champions Trophy,” the board stated in a release.
“To ensure a fair and completely transparent process, a nominee of the Committee of Administrators (CoA) will oversee the entire process along with the Cricket Advisory Committee,” it added.
All applicants will be interviewed by a cricket advisory committee comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman.
The advertised opening comes as India prepares to defend their Champions Trophy title in England. India will kick off their campaign in the eight-team event next week with an opening round match against Pakistan.
The BCCI had always stated Kumble’s performance would be reviewed after his one-year term, but the timing on the eve of a major event has raised eyebrows.
Local media has reported that Kumble displeased some within the world’s most powerful cricket board when he demanded pay hikes for himself and skipper Virat Kohli, and extra retainer fees for Grade A players.
“Kumble spoke to the Committee of Administrators (CoA), while Kohli joined on Skype, asking for 150 per cent hike in the retainership of the Grade A players,” reported Indian news website NDTV.
The gutsy cricketer, who captained the Test side for just over a year after replacing Rahul Dravid in 2007, has had a largely successful run on the international coaching circuit.
India has won all their five Test series under Kumble, even beating top sides like England and Australia in a hugely successful home season.