Thursday, February 4, 2010


Three coaches have been in news over the past week: Arthur Mickey (now an ex-coach of South Africa) has gotten the maximum news bytes after his bolt-from-the-blue resignation; Ottis Gibson created some news by resigning as the bowling coach of England and taking over as the head coach of West Indies; and Gary Kirsten renewed his contract with the BCCI as the coach of  India, thereby squashing all rumours that Cricket South Africa was trying to recruit him.

What really defines a coach's role in a cricket team? Or for that matter, what is the role of the entire supporting staff that accompanies a cricket team? It's common knowledge by now that England's support staff has a bigger strength than their team. There are all kinds of coaches - head coach, assistant coach, batting coach, fast  bowling coach, spin bowling coach, fielding coach, wicket-keeping coach, mental conditioning coach, and the list goes on. Then there are various managers - head manager, assistant manager, media manager, et cetera. And we have more back room staff - video analyst, masseur, physiotherapist, trainer and more.

The strange thing is - everyone of them has a role to play. Sachin Tendulkar, on completion of his 20 years in international cricket, acknowledged the role of all the coaches and the supporting staff that he'd been with. I thought that there was only so much a cricket team could do off the field!

Going by the current trends, what are new possible coaching / supporting roles that might open up in the times to come? I have come up with a few possibilities as job openings with cricket teams: IPL Recruitment Manager (to ensure that the players are selected in the auction), Team Chef (so that Shahid Afridi does not go hungry again), Board of Selectors Negotiation Manager (so that the captain gets a team of his choice always), Multiple Captain's Coach (a role for John Buchanan in KKR), Multiple Mistresses Manager (so that cases like John Terry and Tiger Woods do not come out in the open - a role for Paddy Upton maybe?),... and well, I really cannot think of any more.

Do come up with your own ideas and let me know. Lets see if BCCI is interested in our list.

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