BCCI extends Dravid's term as head coach; Laxman to remain at NCAtext_fields
New Delhi: The BCCI on Wednesday extended the contract of Indian cricket team head coach Rahul Dravid in order to maintain continuity following the senior side's stupendous performance in the ODI World Cup where it won 10 games in a row before losing the final.
However, there was no mention of how long his new tenure would be in the press release issued by the BCCI.
"The Board of Control for Cricket in India announces the extension of contracts for head coach Rahul Dravid and the support staff of Team India (senior men)," the sport's apex body said in a statement.
"The BCCI engaged in productive discussions with Dravid after the term of his contract ended following the recently concluded World Cup and unanimously agreed to further the tenure," it added.
BCCI secretary Jay Shah said that Dravid will have "full backing" of the board, moving forward in his endeavour to win the ICC Trophy, which has been missing from the cabinet for the last decade.
"Having won 10 consecutive games before the final, our World Cup campaign was nothing short of extraordinary, and the head coach (Dravid) deserves appreciation for setting up the right platform for the team to flourish.
"The head coach has our full backing, and we will provide him with all the support needed for sustained success at the international level," the BCCI secretary said in a statement.
"The last two years with Team India have been thoroughly memorable. Together, we have witnessed the highs and lows, and throughout this journey, the support and camaraderie within the group have been phenomenal," Dravid said.
The PTI had on Tuesday reported that Dravid's contract would be renewed with the BCCI looking for continuity in the set-up helmed by the legendary cricketer over the last two years.
Dravid had replaced Ravi Shastri after the T20 World Cup in 2021, getting appointed for a two-year term which ended with the ODI World Cup.
Under Dravid, India also finished as runners-up in the last World Test Championship, losing to Australia in the final.
Along with the 50-year-old Dravid, his support staff comprising batting coach Vikram Rathour, bowling coach Paras Mhambrey and fielding coach T Dilip have also got an extension.
It is expected that his stint would be at least till the T20 World Cup in the West Indies and the USA in June-July next year.
While VVS Laxman, the NCA head, who has often filled in for Dravid when the latter was taking short breaks, is believed to have informed the brass that he is more comfortable working with pathways teams such as India A and India U-19, apart from being actively involved in cricketing matters with regards to the new NCA set-up in Bengaluru.
"The Board also appreciates VVS Laxman for his exemplary roles as Head of NCA and as the stand-in Head Coach. Similar to their legendary on-field partnerships, Dravid and Laxman have worked closely in driving Indian Cricket forward," the BCCI's release makes it clear that both for the time being will continue in their respective roles.
BCCI president Roger Binny, who has been a bridge between the board and the head coach, also welcomed the decision.
"The performances of the Indian Team are a testament to his strategic guidance. I am delighted that he accepted the offer to remain the head coach, and it speaks of the mutual respect and shared vision between him and the BCCI." Dravid said that he will remain committed in the pursuit of excellence in this post-World Cup phase.
"The demands of this role necessitate considerable time away from home, and I deeply appreciate my family's sacrifices and support. Their instrumental role behind the scenes has been invaluable. As we embrace new challenges post the World Cup, we remain committed to the pursuit of excellence," he said.
It must be mentioned that Gujarat Titans coach Ashish Nehra never had any intentions of being the head coach of the national team as he has always said that he "wants to honour his contract with GT till 2025".
Nehra has a young family and he doesn't want to live out of suitcase at the moment and being the India coach involves extensive travelling. Two and half months of IPL coaching is all he is looking at right now.
However, in future when the time is right, he might consider being a white-ball coach of the national team.
With inputs from PTI