Dravid mentor, Upton head coach at Daredevils
Former India captain Rahul Dravid has been appointed team mentor of Delhi Daredevils. Dravid will head a refurbished coaching bench at Daredevils, who have also hired former South Africa and India assistant coach Paddy Upton as head coach.
Dravid and Upton will work with a team of assistants: Zubin Bharucha (technical director), former India batsmen Sridharan Sriram and Praveen Amre (batting coaches), and former Tamil Nadu and India fast bowler TA Sekhar (bowling consultant).
"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 franchise was forced to ring in changes to the coaching staff once former South Africa batsman and coach Gary Kirsten's three-year contract was terminated after two seasons. Under Kirsten, who took charge in September 2013, Daredevils finished bottom of the table in IPL 2014 and second from the bottom last year. Daredevils also axed Kirsten's assistant Rob Walters, who was the trainer.
Incidentally, the trio of Dravid, Upton and Bharucha were part of the core team at Rajasthan Royals, which has been suspended for two seasons by the Lodha Committee. In 2014, having served as captain in previous seasons, Dravid assumed the role of team director cum mentor at Royals. In the 28 matches Dravid oversaw, the franchise won 13 matches and lost 12, with two ties and one no result.
One of the most sought after coaches in the T20 format, Upton recently won the Big Bash League with Sydney Thunder, before also coaching Lahore Qalandars in the inaugural Pakistan Super League.
"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."