Kolkata: A three-member empowered panel of the Indian cricket board on Tuesday finalised the name of the national team coach after interviewing seven candidates, including former India skippers Anil Kumble and Ravi Shastri, but kept its final decision under wraps. Committee member Sourav Ganguly said its decision would be conveyed to Board of Control for Cricket in India's secretary Ajay Shirke. Sources said the panel has already spoken to Shirke. The final announcement is expected to be made by board chief Anurag Thakur on Friday during the body's annual conclave in Dharamsala.
The BCCI's all-powerful cricket advisory committee comprising Sourav Ganguly, V.V.S. Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar - the latter joining the deliberations via video conference - also interviewed former Australian players Tom Moody and Stuart Law, retired English first class cricketer Andy Moles and ex Indian batsmen Lalchand Rajput and Pravin Amre. "We have interviewed seven candidates today. We have selected one and we will convey it to the BCCI secretary. But please don't ask the name," Ganguly told reporters here. Asked if the trio has spoken to the two Indian captains regarding the selection - Virat Kohli for Tests and Mahendra Singh Dhoni for the limited overs format - Ganguly said: "No, we haven't. We have been empowered to finalise the coach and we have done it without consulting the captains." Ganguly had earlier said Amre, Kumble and Rajput were present in person at the five star hotel Taj Bengal, while the committee spoke to Shastri over Skype. "Among overseas men, we spoke to Moody, Law and Moles via Skype," said Ganguly, who left the interview midway to attend a working committee meeting of the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB). He rejoined the interview panel later in the evening. "I have made my presentation already. Let's see what happens. Sachin was not here but we had a word via video conference," Amre told reporters here. Current chairman of selectors Sandeep Patil was not called for the interview. "We have not interviewed him," Ganguly said. Kumble, himself a legend of the game and the most celebrated cricketer in the list, is the highest India wicketktaker in both Tests and One Day Internationals, with 956 scalps. Shastri, an all rounder who represented the country in 80 Test matches and 150 ODIs during a long 11-year international career from 1981 to 1992, coached the Indian team for a brief period in 2007, and was more recently the team director for 18 months, guiding the national side to the semi finals of the 50-over World Cup last year and the ICC World T20 in March. Rajput had a none-too-bright international career, turning out for India in only two Tests and four ODIs. However, he has functioned as manager of Indian cricket team for a brief period. Moody had a modest player biodata, but did well as coach of the Sri Lankan team, by stewarding them to the 2007 world Cup final. Law turned out for Australia for only one Test and 54 one-dayers. He was head coach of the Bangladesh national cricket team in 2011-2012. Amre had featured in 11 Test matches and 37 ODIs for India between 1991 and 1994. He was the coach of the India Under-19 cricket team, which won the 2012 Under-19 Cricket World Cup in Australia. Moles never played for England, but has a rich experience as international coach. He has coached the national teams of Hong Kong, Kenya,Scotland, New Zealand, and Afghanistan over the past 15 years. The post of a formal coach of the Indian cricket team fell vacant early last year, when Duncan Fletcher's term ended. The BCCI had received a total of 57 responses to its advertisement for the job, and 21 of them were shortlisted for the advisory committee to review. But on Tuesday the trio chose to interview just seven of them.