For Anil Kumble the Kanpur test is his first test as the coach of Team India in the home country. This is Kumble’s second test match as coach of the Indian team. His previous assignment was when he coached the team in the recent test series in West Indies in July where India registered a 2-0 lead in the four test series. This will also be Team India’s 500th test. Former ace Indian spinner and current Indian coach Kumble expressed full confidence in the team under the leadership of Kohli and said that the team will achieve newer heights in test cricket. In an interview published in sports.ndtv.com, Kumble expressed his excitement at being able to coach the Indian team. He said, “To be involved as a player for 132 Tests and then once again in the 500th Test is a milestone to celebrate… want a winning start at Green Park!”Indian test team has been coached by some of the great cricketing legends which includes the likes of Bishen Singh Bedi ((1990–1991), Kapil Dev (1999–2000), Greg Chappell (2005–2007), Gary Kirsten(2007–2011), Ravi Shastri (2014-2016). Having played a total of 499 tests till date, India has won 129, lost 157 and drawn 212. It has a winning percentage of 25.85 %. Some of the memorable test wins by India in India which are worth mentioning are: won By 10 wickets v Pakistan, Chennai, 1980, won by 255 runs v West Indies, Chennai, 1988, won by 212 runs v Pakistan, Delhi, 1999, By 1 wicket v Australia, Mohali, 2010.
Kumble has been one of the ardent admirers of the current Indian captain Kohli. Kohli has the great ability to switch between different formats (test and ODIs) with ease.
Kumble, while expressing his confidence on the current Indian team said, “This team is something special. We want to raise the bar in every Test. This team certainly has the potential to make Indian cricket something special in the next five to 10 years.” Kumble, who is India’s highest Test wicket-taker (619 wickets), also added that coming back from one test series in the Caribbeans will be an be an added advantage for the Indian Team.
It will very interesting to see if this extremely talented and gifted Indian team will live up to the expectations of its coach.