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Ravi Shastri reappointed as India head coach
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Ravi Shastri reappointed as India head coach

Ravi Shastri has been retained as head coach of India following his selection by BCCI's Cricket Advisory Committee ahead of the likes of Australia's Tom Moody and New Zealand's Mike Hesson.

The confirmation of Shastri's appointment came on Friday evening after the three-member panel conducted interviews with the shortlisted candidates.

The others in the competition for the much sought-after job included Sri Lanka's batting stalwart Mahela Jayawardene, Australia's Tom Moody (former Sri Lankan national team coach), Phil Simmons from West Indies (he withdraw from the interview in the 11th hour citing personal reasons), former Indian player Robin Singh, Zimbabwe coach and ex-India team manager Lalachand Rajput, and former New Zealand coach Mike Hesson applied for the prestigious post but it is Ravi Shastri who has yet again emerged the victor and managed to gain the trust of the Indian cricket board selection panel.

Shastri, the incumbent coach of India, was always the favourite for the role as he was also publicly supported by skipper Virat Kohli.

Former Indian cricketer and renowned commentator contract with the national side was due to expire by the end of the World Cup but he was granted an extension till the conclusion of the tour of the West Indies.

He will now remain in charge till the 2021 T20 World Cup scheduled to take place in India, prolonging his stint with the Indian side to four years.

Former World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev, who headed the committee which also included Anshuman Gaekwad and former skipper of the Indian women's cricket team Shantha Rangaswamy, informed the decision in a press conference.

"Number three was Tom Moody, number two was Mike Hesson. Number one is Ravi Shastri as all of you were expecting... (But) It was a very close race," Dev claimed, terming all the other candidates capable and "excellent".

To a question regarding the reasons for favoring Shastri over other seasoned coaches, Dev replied, "It is confidential". Unlike the CAC in 2017, the incumbent committee did not consult Kohli for his say in the hiring process. "If we had asked him, we would have had to ask the whole team their opinion too." Kapil said while deflecting the question.   

Shastri was named coach of India in 2017 following the unceremonious exit of Anil Kumble from the important position as reports emerged of a rift between him and leader of the team Kohli.

Boasting camaraderie with star batsman Kohli, Shastri's spell as the coach has seen India cement their dominance in different formats of the game.

Earlier this year, India finally achieved their first-ever Test series win in Australia after a string of overseas losses in red-ball cricket.

However, India's shock defeat to New Zealand in the semi-final of the 2019 World Cup cast doubts over Shastri's future as coach of the team.

Under him, India have triumphed in 13 Tests out of 21, 25 out of 36 T20Is and 43 out of 60 ODIs.

Before he became the head coach, Shastri served as India's team director from 2014 to 2016.

Shastri was a prolific all-rounder widely remembered for his man of the series performance in India's World Championship win in Australia in 1985 and as part of India's World Cup-winning squad in 1983. Shastri represented India in 80 Tests and 150 one-day internationals.

He also had a very successful career as a commentator post-retirement.