Patil replaces Whatmore as NCA Director of Ops

Patil replaces Whatmore as NCA Director of Ops

Former batsman to take charge on November 1

Patil replaces Whatmore as NCA Director of Ops

Sandeep Patil

Patil, a member of the 1983 World Cup winning squad, will take over charge with effect from November 1, a BCCI release said on Wednesday.

The 55-year-old Whatmore, a former Australian batsman who took over charge as NCA Director of Operations two years back, is widely believed to succeed John Buchanan as the coach of Kolkata Knight Riders after putting down his papers a couple of days ago, although an official announcement in this regard is still awaited. The Knight Riders have been looking for a coach since sacking Buchanan after the Kolkata side’s disastrous outing in the second edition of the Indian Premier League in South Africa.

Whatmore, who enjoyed a short stint as a player with Australia, is more renowned for his coaching abilities rather than his cricketing skills. He coached Sri Lanka to the 1996 World Cup title and then India to their under-19 World Cup triumph in Kuala Lumpur last year.

Patil said he was pleasantly surprised. “I never expected this, it’s a bolt from the blue. It has been hinted that I would be given the charge of the proposed batting academy in Mumbai but this is an even bigger challenge,” the 53-year-old told reporters. “I’m excited and thankful to Board President Shashank Manohar and all the other members.”

Patil said the job has some great responsibilities with it and hoped of a good show. “I’m extremely happy, but at the same time nervous too. I’m having butterflies in my stomach like I’m going to play my first Test. It’s a very big challenge and I hope I can do justice to the job,” he said.

“I would be shifting to Bangalore and take up my new job from November 1,” said the player-turned-coach who guided Kenya to the semifinals of the 2003 World Cup in South Africa.  Patil also said that he would be looking for advice from Whatmore and NCA chairman Ravi Shastri.