Buchanan turned down offer to coach India

Published: Friday, May 4, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney:World Cup-winning coach John Buchanan has revealed that he was 'indirectly' approached by Indian cricket board but turned it down as he was not immediately ready for another international assignment after quitting Australia job.

Buchanan said before leaving for the Caribbean he had been approached by BCCI officials to gauge his interest in succeeding Greg Chappell after the World Cup.

''There was some indirect contact from India. But at the moment I am looking for new challenges as a mentor coach, and speaking to Cricket Australia and the Australian Sports Commission about that, as well as a move into corporate world,'' he told Sydney Morning Herald.

The 54-year-old Aussie did not follow up the Indian board approach but said he has an open-mind regarding overseas opportunities, though not in the immediate term.

''Yes, there is still some interest (in international coaching). But - and it's a big but - it would be very much dependent upon my family.

''I really want to be around for that period of (my children's) schooling. But that probably takes me to my late-50s, and if I would like to specifically be involved in the game, maybe I'll have passed my used-by date by then. We'll see.''

Buchanan relinquished his job after having at the helm for almost eight years as Australia's most successful coach.

But, as much as the victories, Buchanan's tenure will be remembered for its relentless pursuit of innovation, including the appointment of an American baseballer as fielding coach and last summer's pre-Ashes 'boot camp'.

Not all agreed with his left-field approach to the game. Spin champion Shane Warne and Ian Chappell were among his harshest critics, campaigning for a return to the basics as opposed to Buchanan's technology-driven approach to coaching.

But, Buchanan proved his critics wrong by reclaiming the Ashes 5-0 and completing an undefeated World Cup campaign.

''It is a fairytale. After the Ashes in 2005 I looked at whether or not I was really required, and had to answer those questions. But the last three tournaments - the ICC Champions Trophy, the Ashes and then the World Cup - to win three of those is an unbelievable finale,'' he said.

Buchanan has offered his services to his successor Tim Nielsen, if only in an unofficial advisory capacity.

''Possibly the less he talks to me the better,'' said Buchanan, mindful that Nielsen, his one-time assistant, approaches the game in a different manner.

''He's got to make his own decisions and his own calls, and I'm sure he will. We'll sit down and have a beer or two and talk about a whole range of things. As the role goes on, I'll always be there if he wants me.''

Shah rubbishes Buchs' claims: Meanwhile BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah strongly denied reported claims by outgoing Australia coach John Buchanan about an 'indirect' proposal to coach Team India, saying he was not aware about any offer made to the 54-year-old Aussie.

''This is the first time I am hearing about it,'' Shah said.

Shah was reacting to a report in an Australian newspaper quoting Buchanan that he was 'indirectly' approached before leaving for the Caribbean World Cup by Indian officials, who were keen to gauge his interest in succeeding Greg Chappell as their coach after the mega event.

The BCCI secretary was in the West Indies along with BCCI's Chief Administrative Officer Ratnakar Shetty to witness the closing stages of the World cup.


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