India will remain without a coach for some time longer as the scheduled meeting of the committee appointed to select the next coach, has been postponed indefinitely.
The committee, comprising three former captains in Sunil Gavaskar, S Venkataraghavan and Ravi Shastri, and other board functionaries, was to meet in Mumbai on November 3. This is the second time the coach committee meeting had to be deferred after they failed to convene in Bangalore on September 28 when they were originally schedule to discuss the applications.
However, as Gavaskar is unavailable on the day, the board will now look for a convenient date for the committee to meet. "Sunil [Gavaskar] is not available on that day and we had to postpone the meeting until further notice," said Niranjan Shah, secretary of the Indian board.
In any case it was unclear exactly what the committee would achieve in its proposed meeting as the BCCI is yet to receive any applications that it considers "suitable". "We've received about 20 applications but the committee is not completely happy." Shah said it was possible the board would wait for more applications. He was also confident that the team would have a coach for the tour to Australia in December. "We should be meeting in the next two weeks and since it's an important tour there could be a name picked up."
The Indian board has been on the lookout for a coach ever since Greg Chappell, the last coach of the Indian team, did not seek to extend his contract after India's dismal showing in the World Cup in March 2007. The closest they came to appointing a coach was in June just before India's tour of England when Graham Ford, the former South Africa coach, was selected for the job. However Ford turned down the offer, deciding to stay with Kent, where he was the director of cricket.
Shah confirmed that the National Cricket Academy (NCA) committee meeting to chart out a new structure for the academy, also scheduled for November 3 in Mumbai, will go on as planned. "We will be looking at the new structure that the director [Dav Whatmore] has in mind."
One important point on the agenda is the approval of the support staff for Whatmore who is likely to pick a physiotherapist and a physical trainer to assist him at the NCA.