Ponting confirms approach for India head coach role

Ricky Ponting has revealed he was approached to be India’s next head coach but despite significant interest in the job said it is an “unlikely” option for him at the moment given the commitment it would require.

Ponting said he retains ambitions to be a national coach, but amid his other current roles – head coach at Delhi Capitals and television work in Australia – the timing is not yet right.

“I’ve seen a lot of reports about it,” Ponting told the ICC Review. “Normally these things pop up on social media before you even know about them, but there were a few little one-on-one conversations during the IPL, just to get a level of interest from me as to whether I would do it.

“I’d love to be a senior coach of a national team, but with the other things that I have in my life and wanting to have a bit of time at home…everyone knows if you take a job working with the Indian team you can’t be involved in an IPL team, so it would take that out of it as well.

“Also, a national head coach is a 10 or 11-month of the year job, and as much as I’d like to do it, it just doesn’t fit into my lifestyle right now and the things that I really enjoy doing.”

Gautam Gambhir has been sounded out by the BCCI for the job while other names linked to it have included Stephen Fleming and Justin Langer.

However, Ponting did appear to keep the door slightly ajar by saying his young son Fletcher had offered a positive response to the prospect of him taking the job.

“My family and my kids have spent the last five weeks over at the IPL with me and they come over every year and I had a whisper to my son about it, and I said, ‘Dad’s been offered the Indian coaching job’ and he said, ‘Just take it dad, we would love to move over there for the next couple of years'” he said. “That’s how much they love being over there and the culture of cricket in India, but right now it probably doesn’t exactly fit into my lifestyle.”

Ponting’s other current roles include head of strategy at Hobart Hurricanes and head coach of Washington Freedom in MLC having signed a two-year deal for that tournament which will follow straight on from the T20 World Cup in USA and West Indies. He has previously worked with Australia’s T20I and ODI side.

The BCCI has said that the head coach role will be across all three formats for three and a half years starting from July 2024 until December 2027.

Dravid began his two-year term after the 2021 T20 World Cup. His stint was due to end after the 2023 ODI World Cup in November last year, but he agreed to an extension until the end of the upcoming T20 World Cup.

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