New Delhi: Master batsman Rahul Dravid (13,288 Test runs, 10,889 in ODIs) was on Tuesday named as mentor of the Delhi Daredevils. Joining him on the support staff will be South African Paddy Upton as chief coach.
The two will be assisted by a team comprising former Mumbai batsman Zubin Bharucha as technical director, former India batsmen Sridharan Sriram and Praveen Amre (batting coaches), and former Tamil Nadu and India fast bowler T.A. Sekhar (bowling consultant).
Dravid, Upton and Bharucha were formerly associated with the Rajasthan Royals, now suspended for two years by the Lodha committee. “I am very excited by the challenge of taking Delhi Daredevils on to the next level. From what I have seen I have been impressed by the ambition and energy demonstrated by the team and I look forward to working with a group of players that I believe have what it takes to succeed,” Dravid said.
“Along with the rest of the support staff, I am fully aware of what this franchise means to its supporters and I intend to do everything possible to help build a team that the fans can be proud of.”
The Daredevils revamped their coaching staff after terminating former India coach Gary Kirsten’s three-year contract early following two disappointing years where the franchise finished near or at the bottom of the Indian Premier League points table.
The group took charge of the side on Monday, on what was also the first day of a training camp, scheduled till March 4 at the Teri ground in Gurgaon.
Dravid, who has moved into an India coaching role with the A team, and the Under-22 and Under-19 teams, takes over a new-look Daredevils dressing room that will also have a sprinkling his the team that finished runners-up at the West Indies at the recent ICC U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh.
Upton was most recently associated with the Sydney Thunder in Australia’s Big Bash T20 tournament, steering the New South Wales side to their maiden title. He was also India’s mental conditioning coach till 2011 in Kirsten’s time. “I relish the privilege to work again with Rahul and Zubin, and to have the opportunity to do so at a franchise like Delhi Daredevils,” Upton said.
“I am constantly learning about the Twenty20 format as I move around the world, and look forward to applying and furthering this knowledge at the coming IPL season with Delhi.”