John Wright's successor May 19, 2005

Short-listed candidates begin interviews for coaching job

Cricinfo staff

The race for India's next coach reached one step closer to the finish line when the four short-listed candidates - Mohinder Amarnath, Greg Chappell, Desmond Haynes and Tom Moody - began the process of final interviews for the job on Thursday afternoon.

A BCCI-appointed committee began the interviewing process at 2pm local time (0830 GMT). Those chosen to sit on the panel include former India captains Sunil Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri and Srinivas Venkataraghavan. The first candidate in was Amarnath, and the rest were to follow in alphabetical order.

Speculation has reached fever-pitch over who will eventually get the job, and a clear front-runner is yet to emerge. Chappell and Moody are thought to be the most likely to get the job. Haynes is thought to have been picked with the fact that the World Cup will be staged in the West Indies next, but his lack of coaching experience could go against him.

There was also some doubt that Haynes would not arrive on time, because he had not yet obtained a visa, but the Indian external affairs and home ministries ensured that the necessary paperwork was processed in time, and he reached Delhi late on Wednesday evening. Amarnath, if you believe recent media reports, has done his chances no favours by making rather bold and provocative comments about who should be coach.