Frustrated by MCA's waiting game, Paras Mhambrey decides to coach Vidarbha
Paras Mhambrey, one of the candidates in fray for the position of Mumbai coach, has decided to take over the coaching reins of Vidarbha.
Paras Mhambrey (right) with former Vidarbha coach Sairaj Bahutule at the Wankhede Stadium in November last year. Pic/Atul Kamble.
The former India and Mumbai pace bowler was awarded a two-year contract after Sairaj Bahutule, another candidate in fray for the Mumbai job, decided to end his association with the Vidarbha Cricket Association.
Mhambrey said he was frustrated with the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) for keeping those interested in the assignment waiting. “It (frustration) was one of the reasons. I gave an interview to MCA officials on April 14. They were supposed to announce their decision by April 25. It got postponed. In the meantime, I was getting many offers. Vidarbha was one of them,” Mhambrey told mid-day yesterday.
“I told them to wait till April 25 as MCA was going to announce their coach. I am not the one who would negotiate for a better price with two-three teams. I wanted to be fair to both associations. Vidarbha agreed to wait till the 25th. But when the MCA postponed their decision, I decided to take a call. At least with Vidarbha I was getting a definite offer.”
Mhambrey said his first preference was always Mumbai. “I have been a selector for quite some time. I have played all my cricket here. I know the Mumbai set-up well. That is why I approached the MCA for the coaching job.
“I am quite familiar with things here. I have never moved to Central Zone before. But it is going to be a challenge and I am ready to accept it,” said Mhambrey, who has coached Maharashtra, Baroda and Bengal in the past.
In the last Ranji Trophy season, Vidarbha finished seventh out of the nine teams in Group ‘A’ with 12 points from eight matches.
Mhambrey said building Vidarbha would require a step-by-step approach. “I will try to get the feel of the place first. We will have meetings with different age-group coaches so that everyone is in the know of what is happening. We will have to be patient. My aim would be to spread cricket in the region and get as many players as we can to represent the state. Then, the ultimate goal would be to produce quality cricketers for India,” Mhambrey signed off.