Coaching the Indian Men’s cricket team is one of the most demanding jobs in the world of sports. Undoubtedly it is one of the highest paying jobs in the world but one has to pay quite a price on many occasions. There have been legendary Indian cricketers turned coaches but they couldn’t last more than a year.
Let’s look at Top 5 Indian coaches who couldn’t last more than a year at the helm:
#5 Salim Durani (1980-81)
Salim Durani was one cricketer who was popular for hitting sixes on will. He was an aggressive cricketer who wore his heart on his sleeves. Durani was appointed as the head coach of the Indian team in 1980.
The position was called the manager back then. Durani who played 29 Tests walked in with a lot of reputation. He couldn’t make much of a difference as a coach though. Ashok Mankad replaced him within a year in 1981.
#4 Bishan Singh Bedi (1990-91)
Bishan Singh Bedi is widely regarded as one of the best left-arm spinners in the world. Bedi is famous for his fiery attitude. His no holds barred approach was always fraught with fear. Bedi was appointed as the head coach in 1990.
He continued to strongly voice his opinions even after becoming the head coach. Bedi once quipped that he would dump the entire team for its bad performance. His tenure lasted for just a year.
#3 Madan Lal (1996-97)
Madan Lal was part of India’s World Cup-winning squad in 1983. He succeeded Sandeep Patil, another World Cup-winning member as India’s head coach in 1996. Lal successfully saw India winning series across formats against both Australia and South Africa.
The team seemed to be gelling in fine under Lal’s mentorship. But a disastrous tour to the West Indies had its ramifications. Lal’s tenure ended on a disappointing note soon after that series.
#2 Kapil Dev (1999-00)
Kapil Dev is arguably one of India’s greatest ever cricketers. He is undoubtedly India’s best-ever all-rounder. Dev led India to a giant-killing World Cup win in 1983. He changed the course of Indian cricket forever. Hence his appointment as the coach of the Indian team was much celebrated.
It was expected that a champion player like Dev will reignite the winning mentality in the team. But to everyone’s shock, India went through one of its lowest cricket phases under Kapil Dev as a coach. Australia whitewashed India in the series down under. Sachin Tendulkar quit captaincy. But this was not it.
The lowest cricketing point was the match-fixing fiasco that surfaced during the time. It was speculated that Dev was one of the alleged conspirators. Amidst all the chaos, Dev resigned as India’s coach.
#1 Anil Kumble (2016-17)
India had slowly started dominating Test cricket again in 2015-16. Virat Kohli took over Test captaincy reign in 2014-15. He became the all-format captain in 2017. It was during this period post India’s exit in the 2016 T20 World Cup that Anil Kumble was appointed as the head coach. Sourav Ganguly wanted Kumble as the head coach and was instrumental in his appointment.
The Kohli-Kumble partnership was expected to take India to newer heights. And to Kumble’s credit, India did not lose a single series. They just lost a single Test that season of 17 Tests they played. But cracks started appearing in the captain-coach relationship in the 4th Test against Australia at Dharamshala. Kohli who was injured during the Test did not agree with Kumble’s view. It further boiled over in the Champions Trophy 2017. An upset Kumble submitted his resignation post India’s loss in the finals citing irreparable working relationship damage with the captain.