Australian’s wary of Fletcher’s appointment as India’s coach

April 27th, 2011 - 11:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, April 27 (IANS) Duncan Fletcher’s appointment as India’s coach is likely to create some unease among the Australians who are now anticipating a heated four Test series agaisnt the World champions later this year.

Fletcher, who was the former coach of England, and was instrumental in Australia’s 2005 Ashes demise. He famously winked at Ricky Ponting from the balcony at Trent Bridge after he was run out by a substitute fielder to rile the then Australian captain.

Former Australian coach John Buchanan expects Fletcher’s presence in the Indian dressing room to further spice up the India-Australia series.

“It may do,” Buchanan was quoted as saying by Sydney Morning Herald. “There has been some change in personnel in the Australian ranks and certainly if Ricky Ponting is selected in the Australian team he won’t have to contend with Duncan from a position of captaincy, maybe as a player.”

“There may be some lingering memories but he will be in different clothes and have a different set of players with him and I think Australia will be more concerned about the talent India will bring as opposed to thinking too much about Duncan.”

Buchanan described the 62-year-old former Zimbabwe captain Fletcher as competitive and dogged.

“He was a bit of a tough nut. I couldn’t say we were the best of friends but he is a very competitive, dogged sort of person, a pretty good thinker and a pretty good planner around a team. Obviously in 2005 and before that he pulled England into such a shape that it caught us by surprise.”

Fletcher has been awarded a two-year contract and takes over from Gary Kirsten, who guided India to the No.1 Test ranking and recent World Cup triumph.

Mickey Arthur, who as South African coach hired Fletcher as a consultant for the 2008-09 tour of Australia, believes Fletcher is suitable for the Indian assignment.

“He will bring a level head to the Indian job. He is certainly experienced enough to do that,” Arthur said.

“Duncan is his own person. He has been known to be a little bit grumpy but I never saw that in my time with him, that might have been because he was a consultant and not the head coach. He certainly lets the players get on with it, he will be in the background and if something needs to be said he won’t be shy in saying it, put it that way.”

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