5 Challenges That Lie Ahead Of Rahul Dravid As India’s Coach

Challenges that lie ahead of Rahul Dravid as India's head coach
Challenges that lie ahead of Rahul Dravid as India's head coach

Rahul Dravid will kickstart his new journey as a full-time India coach with the T20I series against New Zealand. He will be inheriting a team that is currently one of the world leaders in the game. India are arguably the best all-format team currently but unfortunately they don’t have a trophy to show for it. He is taking charge in an environment that is only getting challenging with every passing moment. 

We look at 5 such challenges that lie ahead of him as India’s head coach:

#5 Spin Bowling options

Post the Champions Trophy 2017 final debacle, India were hell-bent on playing wrist-spinners in the limited-overs format. The idea worked well with Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav helping India win many games. But it came at the cost of India’s team balance. India were effectively just playing 7 batsmen with no batting depth. 

The move made them make radical changes in the 2019 ODI World Cup that eventually cost us winning the trophy. Since then, India have treaded cautiously and have often appeared clueless about which way they want to go with their spin bowling department. Rahul Dravid will do well to ensure the best performing spinners play irrespective of them being either finger or wrist spinners.

#4 Grooming Future captaincy options

Rohit Sharma was a captain in waiting. He will now lead the T20I side permanently. There are speculations that he might soon lead the ODI side too with Virat Kohli continuing the Test captaincy. But post them there currently seems to be a dearth of leaders in the side.

KL Rahul’s ascension to T20I vice-captaincy is a step in the right direction. Dravid will be entrusted to find and develop future leaders across formats. This transition will be one of the most vital challenges in his tenure.

#3 Player workload and the problem of plenty

India is one of the most followed cricket teams in the world. The more cricket they play, the more revenue they are able to generate for other cricketing nations too. But this comes at the expense of a cramped cricketing schedule. The players feel exhausted in this already challenging bio-bubble environment. Dravid will need to manage the players’ workload quite carefully. The need to prioritise tours will fall under Dravid’s lap. 

On the other hand, with a person like Dravid at the helm, you expect him to tackle this problem with opportunities. He will look to expand the talent pool available and ensure the supply line keeps flourishing. Identifying the best among the talents available will surely be a task, but you expect him to overcome this. 

#2 Split captaincy

India did dangle with split captaincy briefly with MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli at the helm. Dhoni was the limited-overs captain while Kohli was the Test captain. The hierarchy even then was clear with Dhoni being the senior leader with Kohli being next in line. But here is where things get tricky for India now.

Kohli and Rohit are two strong leaders who will be taking charge of the sides in different formats. Dravid’s big challenge will be to ease communication between them and also ensure a healthy team environment. 

#1 India’s performance in knockout games

India’s Achilles heels in recent times has been their performance in the ICC knockout games. India have failed to win an ICC event post their Champions Trophy win in 2013. Things just got worse for them this time in T20 World Cup where they even failed to qualify for the knockouts.

Rahul Dravid will be looking at this aspect quite keenly and will look to address this immediately. India has 3 ICC events in the upcoming 2 years involving a T20 World Cup, WTC, and ODI World Cup. His vision will be to grab all the 3 in this tenure.

These are interesting times for Indian cricket and who better than Mr. Dependable to take charge of things.

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