Mumbai's Ranji team gets new coach

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:54 IST

The Mumbai cricket team is celebrating after winning their 35th Ranji Trophy title in 2003.

Mumbai's Ranji team gets new coach

Mumbai: The Mumbai cricket team is celebrating after winning their 35th Ranji Trophy title in 2003. The team defended the title in 2004 and reached the semi finals last year. But the man who guided them since 2002, Chandrakant Pandit, has resigned as coach ahead of the upcoming season. "Three seasons is only with the Ranji Trophy, but I coached the Under 19 when I had taken up almost four seasons. So I think that's a long time and I thought that probably taking a break will be the ideal idea for me at the moment," said Pandit. Two Ranji trophies in three seasons, is undoubtedly very creditable to both the coach and the players. But what many give Pandit credit for, is for producing the results even though there were very few big stars in the team. However, despite his excellent record, the Mumbai Cricket Association or the MCA did not persuade him to continue. "Definitely he was our first choice but since he had already mentioned that he wants to take a break and he has given a letter in writing, the Committee felt that we have to honour his decision," said Lalchand Rajput, Joint Honorary Secretary. "And that's the reason we chose Karsan Ghavri who was coach earlier as well," he added. New challenges Ghavri had coached Mumbai in the 1993-94 season when Mumbai won the Ranji with Ravi Shastri as Captain. But the new coach has many challenges, of which the main is getting the players a 100 per cent mentally and physically fit. He also has to make sure that players do not decide to leave the Mumbai Team, especially since Captain Sairaj Bahutule may choose to shift to Maharashtra. "I think the officials will have to put their act together and they have to restrict these guys for them not to go somewhere else," said Ghavri. "So they'll have to sit down and decide everything once and for all. If the good players start running away from here its not a good sign," he added. Mumbai Cricket is certainly going through a difficult phase. This is the first time that the Indian Team has no player from Mumbai since 1996. And corporation from the association and selectors will play a crucial part in Ghavri's success as a coach. Besides making the team play for the pride of Mumbai, Ghavri's main challenge will be to make sure that the players don't just rely on the reputation that the 36 time Ranji champions have.
Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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