Chandrakant Pandit has emerged as the Dronacharya of Indian cricket in recent years. He is known as a meticulous coach with the Midas touch. The former India wicketkeeper has achieved tremendous success in the domestic circuit. He turned unfancied Ranji teams like Vidarbha into champion sides. This year Pandit guided Madhya Pradesh to their first Ranji Trophy title. Madhya Pradesh outplayed 41-time Ranji Trophy champions Mumbai in impressive fashion in the final.
Before that Vidarbha won back-to-back titles under the guidance of Chandrakant Pandit in 2018 and 2019.
In the 2017-18 season, Vidarbha secured a convincing nine-wicket triumph against Delhi to clinch the Ranji Trophy. Pandit once again emerged victorious in the very next season after Vidrabha registered a 78-run victory against Saurashtra in the final to win their second straight Ranji title.
But helping Madhya Pradesh to win their first Ranji Trophy title was a bit more special for the celebrated mentor. Pandit had lost the Ranji Trophy title as the captain of the Madhya Pradesh team in 1998/99. So it was an emotional moment for Pandit when Madhya Pradesh won their maiden Ranji Trophy title under his mentorship.
In his playing career, Pandit was a part of India’s squad for the 1987 World Cup and represented Mumbai, Assam and Madhya Pradesh in the domestic circuit, winning Ranji Trophy twice as a player.
Now the highly-vaunted coach has been elevated to the position of the head coach of IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). Pandit has a reputation of turning unheralded domestic sides into champion teams. So it isn’t surprising that KKR have handed him the task of reviving the fortunes of the iconic IPL franchise. KKR have only qualified for the play-offs once in the last four years.
The KKR top honchos will hope that Chandrakant Pandit’s philosophy of meticulous planning and discipline, work wonders for their team. Pandit is a hard-taskmaster, so it will be interesting to see how he will manage some of the most iconic cricketers at KKR.
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