After a commanding victory against the West Indies in the first Test, the Indian cricket team has regained its form and confidence. The second and final Test is set to commence on July 20, following which India will engage in a three-match ODI series against the West Indies before bidding farewell to the Caribbean after a five-match T20I series. Looking ahead, the ‘Men in Blue’ are scheduled to embark on a tour to Ireland for a three-match T20I series. The matches, scheduled for August 18, 20, and 23, will be held in Dublin. Recent reports from leading media portal indicate that head coach Rahul Dravid, along with his coaching staff comprising batting coach Vikram Rathour and bowling coach Paras Mhambrey, will be returning to India for a well-deserved break after the conclusion of the T20I series against the West Indies. Consequently, they will not accompany the team on their trip to Ireland.
VVS Laxman will serve as head coach in Rahul Dravid absence
Stepping in to guide the Indian team in Ireland will be VVS Laxman, the head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA). Laxman previously served as the stand-in head coach during India’s tour of Ireland in 2022, bringing his expertise and experience to the role. Joining him in the coaching staff could be either Sitanshu Kotak or Hrishikesh Kanitkar as the batting coach, while the responsibilities of the bowling coach are expected to be assigned to either Troy Cooley or Sairaj Bahutule.
The Ireland series is eagerly awaited as it marks the highly-anticipated comeback of star pacer Jasprit Bumrah. Bumrah’s return to the team will provide invaluable preparation ahead of Asia Cup, the upcoming home series against Australia, and the subsequent ODI World Cup scheduled for October-November.
During the Ireland series, the reins of captaincy are likely to be handed to Hardik Pandya. Additionally, the inclusion of Shreyas Iyer, who has recently resumed batting in the nets, is anticipated in the squad that will travel to Europe. However, KL Rahul, currently in the recovery phase from an injury, will not be part of the Ireland series or the Asia Cup, as he requires additional time to regain full fitness.
As the Indian team readies itself for the challenges that lie ahead, the rest period for Rahul Dravid and the coaching staff presents an opportunity for rejuvenation and strategic planning. Under the guidance of VVS Laxman, the team will aim to deliver an outstanding performance in Ireland and continue their quest for success in the upcoming tournaments.