Former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar on Tuesday said that India Women’ T20 captain Harmanpreet Kaur is exaggerating the role of a coach in the success of a team. In a tweet, the cricketer-turned-commentator said that batswoman needs to remember that Powar was not the coach when India almost won the World Cup in 2016.
“Harmanpreet needs reminding that when Powar was not coach India reached the finals of the WC and almost won it,” he said. “By suggesting that if Powar is removed we have to start from scratch is an exaggeration of any coach’s role in the team,” he added.
Harmanpreet needs reminding that when Powar was not coach India reached the finals of the WC and almost won it. By suggesting that if Powar is removed we have to start from scratch is an exaggeration of any coach’s role in the team.
— Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) 4 December 2018
Manjrekar’s remarks came a day after Harmanpreet, along with Smriti Mandhana requested the BCCI to extend Ramesh Powar’s term as the head coach of the Indian team. In a letter written to the board, she wrote: “I, as the T20 captain and ODI vice-captain is appealing before you to allow Powar to further continue as our team coach. There are hardly 15 months for the next T20 World Cup and a month to go for the New Zealand tour. The way he has transformed us as a team, I feel no reason to replace him.”
“Our defeat in the semi-finals was very disheartening and it brings us all to feel more miserable to see how the controversies has stained our image and questioned the entire cricket fraternity. Sir Ramesh Powar not only improved us as players but did motivate us to set targets and challenge our own limits. He has changed the face of Indian women’s cricket team both technically and strategically. He has inculcated in us the sense of winning,” she added.
The tensions escalated between Powar and the ODI captain Mithali Raj last month, following the selection controversy at the semifinal of the ICC Women’s World T20 in which the senior player was dropped from the team. Powar’s term as the interim coach acrimoniously came to an end on November 30, 2018. The BCCI immediately invited fresh applications for the job, in which the former Mumbai allrounder is free to re-apply.
Despite Harmanpreet and Smriti backing Powar, Ekta Bisht and Raj are against Powar’s reinstatement as the coach, according to a report from news agency PTI.