Kirsten takes over; Rajput goes

With Gary Kisrten taking over as the full-time coach, Lalchand Rajput has to go.

updated: March 21, 2008 07:30 IST
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Contrary to speculations, the Cricket Board on Wednesday decided to retain fielding coach Robin Singh and bowling coach Venkatesh Prasad for India's Test series against South Africa commencing from March 26 in Chennai.

With Gary Kirsten taking over as the full-time coach, assistant coach Lalchand Rajput, however, got no such favour and had to go.

BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah said both Prasad and Robin, who toured Australia with the Indian team, had been retained for the time being and a decision regarding their future with the side would be taken after the end of the series.

"As of now, we have retained both Robin Singh and (Venkatesh) Prasad till the series ends. Decision regarding extending their tenure with the team would be taken later," said Shah.

He, however, added that Rajput would not have any role to play in the Tests against the South Africa.

"Since Kirsten is now the new coach of the Indian team, I don't think he is needed," added Shah.

Prasad recently was named coach of the Bangalore team of the Indian Premier League (IPL) while Robin took over the coaching reins of the Hyderabad side, triggering speculation about their association with the Indian team.

Though both stay for the series against South Africa, Shah dismissed a dual role for the duo in future.

"I don't think that they can perform a dual role. If they are employed by an organisation, unless they get a go-ahead (from the franchisee), they just cannot do that," he said.

Shah also announced that Paddy Upton will join the squad as physical and mental conditioning coach, while Paul Close would come on board as the new physiotherapist for the series.

A new full-time physiotherapist would be appointed by the end of next month.