According to a report from The Indian Express, Sri Lankan legend Mahela Jayawardene has rejected an offer to become the new head coach of Team India.
The BCCI are on the lookout to replace current boss Ravi Shastri. The 59-year-old’s contract expires after the T20 World Cup in November. Team India will need to line up a new head coach by then and if the report is to be believed they had a name in mind.
Jayawardene, one of the finest players in the history of the game, was reportedly the BCCI’s first pick. However, the Sri Lankan has turned down that opportunity for a couple of reasons.
Why did Mahela Jayawardene reject India’s job offer?
Jayawardene is currently the coach of Indian Premier League side Mumbai Indians. He has guided the team to multiple IPL trophies over the years, and it is no surprise that he’s someone the BCCI considered.
However, Jayawardene decided to turn down the offer because he has his heart set on the Sri Lanka job. He wants to be his country’s head coach in the near future while also retaining his current job with the Mumbai Indians.
BCCI rules state that the Indian coach cannot take up any other assignment while he/she is under contract with the national team. That is reportedly the reason why the former Sri Lanka skipper decided to turn down the offer.
BBCI approach ex-India coach Anil Kumble
With Jayawardene no longer an option, the report claims that the BCCI have offered the role to Kumble, who was at the helm for a little under a year between 2016 and 2017.
The former Indian spinner was forced off his job after falling out with skipper Virat Kohli. He walked out as a result, but with Rohit Sharma set to take over the captaincy after the T20 World Cup, the BCCI have opened the door for Kumble to return.
Kumble is currently in the UAE with IPL side Punjab Kings. He is their director of cricket operations, but he will have to give up that role should he accept BCCI’s offer to take charge of the Indian cricket team.