Duncan Fletcher has come under severe criticism in recent times © Getty Images
Duncan Fletcher has come under severe criticism in recent times © Getty Images

Mumbai: Sep 11, 2014

Former India stumper Farokh Engineer wants Duncan Fletcher axed as the Indian team’s chief coach, and the appointment of Ravi Shastri and Dilip Vengsarkar to guide the team after the 3-1 drubbing Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men received in the five-match Test series in England. “Ravi has done extremely well. He has motivated the boys, he is a dynamic character. In fact, he should oversee all cricket. Not only one-day cricket, he should oversee Test cricket as well,” said the former Test keeper here today after inaugurating Cricket Club of India’s (CCI) indoor academy.

Former India all-rounder Shastri was roped in as the team director in overall charge of team for the One-Day International (ODI) series that followed and which India won 3-1, though the under-fire Fletcher continued in his post. Former captain Vengsarkar has served as chief selector in the past. “I think along with Ravi, you should have someone like Dilip Vengsarkar. They have both played cricket together. They both know the game inside out,” said Engineer.

“These two…can turn the fortunes of Indian cricket. I would say Dilip Vengsarkar would be the prime candidate because he has done it at all levels. He has got his own academies. And for me he is the prime person to be inducted into Indian cricket for coaching or management,” Engineer said, adding Indian-born cricketers should be taking charge of the team. Asked if Vengsarkar should replace Fletcher, Engineer said, “Dilip Vengsarkar should have replaced him ages ago. I am not against Duncan Fletcher and I don’t even know him. I am only criticising his glum nature.

“I have not seen him bring the best out of the boys. I have not seen him pro-active as such. He is an aloof person as far as I am concerned. You need someone boisterous to make the boys believe in themselves.”

Engineer also rated CCI’s Brabourne Stadium ground highly and said it was up there with any top cricket ground in the world like the Lord’s. Sachin Bajaj, a member of the CCI’s executive committee, said the indoor academy is the first step in realizing former club chief Raj Singh Dungarpur’s vision. The academy has two lanes with two bowling machines and will add a third surface later, with a practice wicket on east lawn, he added.