The blame for the appointment of coaches becoming a farcical and extended affair could well lie with player power that is driving Indian cricket now. Captain Virat Kohli asked for Ravi Shastri as head coach and the latter has had his way in getting Bharat Arun and Sanjay Bangar on board as full-time coaches. The legends of the game, like Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and V.V.S. Laxman, who were on the committee to select the head coach, may have reason to feel slighted. Their recommendation of Rahul Dravid and Zaheer Khan for consultant positions on batting and bowling is being accepted like an afterthought, to buy peace, rather than serve the principle that they are suitable.
The support staff, who might occupy one full coach on four wheels or more on the ground, are in place. As the team embarks on new journeys after the disappointment of the Champions Trophy, its destiny is in its own hands as the choice of coaching personnel is that of the captain and head coach. There can be no room for excuses beyond the vagaries of the sport and its unpredictable play of fortunes on the field, particularly in the World Cup of 2019, the prime target of the team now. Player power may have been enhanced by the birth of the IPL and the fabulous salaries it pays. But at no time did it assume these proportions in which they are dictating everything. The BCCI may be in a bit of a hole thanks to its intransigence over administrative reforms. However, it appears it has handed over the game in its entirety to the players.