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The Indian cricket team will have its next coach by Thursday evening, confirmed Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Anurag Thakur. Thursday’s announcement will conclude an exhaustive selection and interview process, which began earlier this month.

Thakur told news agency ANI ahead of the BCCI’s four-day cricket conclave in Dharamsala, “Announcement on Indian cricket team’s head coach will be made by this evening."

The Indian cricket team has been without a coach since its former team director Ravi Shastri’s contract expired after the 2016 World Twenty20 in March. Shastri was among the earliest applicants for the job, and remains a leading contender.

Also read: Coach contenders of the Indian cricket team

Shastri will be up against former India captain Anil Kumble, who, according to media reports, has emerged as a front-runner for the position, even though he has no previous, hands-on coaching experience.

Other applicants interviewed by the BCCI’s cricket advisory committee (CAC) include chairman of selectors Sandeep Patil, former India players Pravin Amre, Venkatesh Prasad and Robin Singh. The CAC, which has Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and V.V.S. Laxman as its members, met in Kolkata this week to interview and seek presentations from shortlisted applicants.

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