Former India head coach Ravi Shastri has been critical of the breaks the current head coach Rahul Dravid has been granted in recent times. Dravid has been rested for the upcoming limited-overs series (three T20Is and three ODIs) against New Zealand as his former teammate and current NCA head VVS Laxman will act as interim coach of the teams led by Hardik Pandya (T20Is) and Shikhar Dhawan (ODIs).
Several senior stars Virat Kohli, skipper Rohit Sharma and opener KL Rahul have been rested for the upcoming tour. Apart from them, the entire coaching staff, including head coach Dravid, has also been given a break after the T20 World Cup.
However, Shastri is not in favour of coaches taking breaks.
“I do not believe in breaks,” Shastri said during a virtual press conference on the eve of the first T20I between India and New Zealand in Wellington.
The 60-year-old said that the rest that the India coach gets during the Indian Premier League should be enough.
“Because I want to understand my team, I want to understand my players and I want to then, be in control of that team. These breaks… what do you need that many breaks for to be honest? You get your 2-3 months of the IPL, that’s enough for you to rest as a coach. But other times, I think a coach should be hands-on, whoever he is,” he added.
Dravid took over the coaching charge from Shastri last year after the 2021 T20 World Cup.
Earlier, Dravid was rested for the series against Zimbabwe and Laxman took over the charge of the team. While the tight calendar also forced Dravid to miss a couple of series this year against Ireland and South Africa (ODIs).
Meanwhile, Munish Bali (fielding coach), Hrishikesh Kanitkar (batting coach) and Sairaj Bahutule (bowling coach) will be part of the support staff in New Zealand. All three coaches are based at the National Cricket Academy which is headed by Laxman.
Bali was also part of the India squad in Ireland and briefly in England earlier this year before doing the home series against South Africa.