The resignation of Anil Kumble from the post of India’s head coach stirred up the cricketing community just after India’s defeat in the Champion’s Trophy final. According to the 2016 contract, Kumble’s tenure was to end after the Caribbean tour. But apparently, something was happening behind the camera which did not see the limelight until Kumble’s resignation.
The news of Kumble’s issues with the team surfaced close to the inauguration of the Champions Trophy which was then not so clear. As the tournament progressed deeper insights related to what the issue really was were obtained. Kumble’s attitude towards the team especially Captain Kohli was the real matter of concern. This dispute gained further impetus after India’s loss in the final.
A BCCI official opened up about the situation speaking to the PTI, “There had been reports that the CAC(comprising Tendulkar, Ganguly, and Laxman) had okayed Kumble’s extension. They had okayed his extension but with a rider. They had said that Kumble should be retained provided all pending issues are resolved,”
There were a series of meeting held in the hotel of the Indian team in London on the evening of the final. The first meeting included Kumble meeting the BCCI top brass and the CAC members. The official said after the meeting,”When we spoke to Anil separately and specifically asked him if there’s any problem, he said he has ‘no problems with Virat’. He was also told about the specific areas where Kohli has reservations about his functioning, while Anil said these were non-issues.”
The second meeting saw Virat meeting the same officials in the hotel. In the third and probably the most significant meeting the captain and the coach were seated across the table and given a chance to try and resolve the issues. After these series of meetings the official added,”The two had stopped talking to each other since December when the England Test series got over. There were problems but it was like shocking that the two didn’t have any proper communication for the past six months. On Sunday evening after the final, they were made to sit at the table and they both agreed that it’s not working out.”
“Look, if one of the two protagonists feel that there are issues which seemed to be a non-issue to the other one, only these two can then sort out. Once they sat across the table, both realized after coming out that it has gone beyond repair. Anil’s tickets were booked for Barbados. His wife was also supposed to join him but he knew it was over,” the official added
Asked if he could be more specific, the official said: “Let’s put it that Virat felt that Anil is entering an area which was his domain. For Anil, who has been a decorated player and an India captain, he has his own beliefs and ideas but the final call always stays with the captain,” he said.
Ahead of the West Indies tournament starting next month, this would not be a good sign for the Indian team. A new head coach would not be appointed until the end of the tour as scheduled, irrespective of Kumble’s resignation.