And needless to say, the interested parties have begun making their moves. On Thursday, an emergency managing committee meeting was called to discuss the new selection panel. It is learnt that the list of candidates was already prepared and only a final approval from the committee was required.
The decision was, however, deferred after a few members demanded “extra time” and a need for a “proper discussion” before arriving at any decision.
According to an MCA official, it is an attempt to please voters. “Firstly, there is no need to select the new selection panel now as the elections are just a few months away. Let the new committee make the appointment. The two-year term of this committee is ending in July. What’s more, there’s still a lot of time for the new season to start. What the managing committee is doing is just to secure its vote bank,” the official said.
There are several names doing the rounds for the senior selection committee chief. Former India player and Wankhede curator Sudhir Naik and former India pacer Karsan Ghavri seem to be the frontrunners. There is a talk of getting former Mumbai captain Paras Mhambrey into the new selection panel as well. But various members doubt his availability due to his full-time commitment to Mumbai Indians.
Coach may be safe
It is learnt that Mumbai’s Ranji Trophy-winning coach Sulakshan Kulkarni is likely to retain his job after talks of extension of his contract. However, some members are pitching for former India batsman Sanjay Bangar, 1983 World Cupper Balvinder Singh Sandhu and Mumbai stalwart Zubin Barucha as new coach.
Meanwhile, MCA is all set to boot out veteran Vilas Godbole as coach of the U-25 team despite back-to-back titles to his credit in the last two seasons. He is likely to be replaced with Deepak Patil, who is also a managing committee member.