The Telegraph
Monday , December 10 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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Where is coach Fletcher?

Calcutta: Being the face of Team India, there’s no hiding for captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Not that he wants to slink away.

It’s easy to target Dhoni, but where is coach Duncan Fletcher? What has been his contribution? Is he subject to reviews? Moreover, why doesn’t he face the media?

The other day, when Fletcher could have come before the journos, at the Eden, fielding coach Trevor Penney was sent instead. Why, indeed?

Fletcher took over in June last year, from the tour of the West Indies, and has presided over some of India’s worst performances, not only overseas, but at home, in the ongoing series.

The 64-year-old should consider himself lucky that he’s not coaching in the EPL. He would’ve been fired months ago.

One isn’t really sure to what extent Fletcher communicates with the players, but somebody who has watched him from close quarters, as an India manager, told The Telegraph: “I found him statue-like, not saying anything...”

If that indeed is how Fletcher operates, then it’s time to look for a successor before we slip any further on the rankings’ ladder.

Questions are also being asked about the role played by bowling coach Joe Dawes, who came on board this year.

Is Dawes too from the Fletcher School? If, yes, then the Board has invited more trouble.

England’s support staff, on the other hand, is awesome: Graham Gooch is the batting coach, Mushtaq Ahmed works with the Graeme Swanns’ and David Saker is the fast bowling coach. At the top is team director Andy Flower.

To have two former captains in the back-room is surely a massive plus for Alastair Cook. He can, therefore, focus more on his own batting.