Board of Control for Cricket in India left fans puzzled last week when it invited applications for the new coach of team India despite Anil Kumble’s great record in last 12 months. However, a report by The Indian Express has made things slightly clear. The report says that a message was sent to a BCCI official last week by Indian cricket team’s captain Virat Kohli and read as ‘he is overbearing’. The report added that this message was meant for coach Anil Kumble, with whom the Kohli isn’t completely happy.
Sources in the dressing room say that Kohli had apprehensions about Kumble right from the start. “He would throw a word or two about what he thought about the new coach. You know, nothing bad, but there was enough there to realise he wasn’t sure or had some doubts,” a member of the Indian contingent was quoted saying by The Indian Express. The reason behind this is believed to be that Kohli isn’t getting the same type of backing from Kumble as he used to from Ravi Shastri.
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“It’s just not the captain alone. A few months back, a bowler landed at the national cricket academy in Bangalore. Rest, recuperation and some fitness work was on his mind. Some bit of bowling too. He was told he had to put in hours of bowling, get Test-match fit. He wasn’t initially keen but was told he had no choice. For what it’s worth, his bowling improved at the end of the stint,” a source was quoted saying in the report.
One man who isn’t surprised by this development is the former RCB coach Rey Jennings who faced a similar problem with Kohli few years back. “A hard coach can keep pushing and prodding the players of the team but the relationship between the captain and coach has to be good. The trust has to be there. The coach can have issues with the rest of the players but needs to have a smooth relationship with the captain for things to progress. And, as a captain, he has the right to work with people he is comfortable with and I have no complaints,” Jennings said.