Harare, May 19 (IANS) A day after taking over the mantle of the beleaguered Zimbabwe side, newly-appointed interim head coach Lalchand Rajput has set himself a goal to guide the team to the final of the upcoming T20 International tri-series in July.
“My job is to get the best results, for the team to do well, perform better. For the tri-series against Australia and Pakistan, both strong teams, the first goal is to reach the final,” Rajput was quoted as saying by the International Cricket Council.
Zimbabwe will host a T20I tri-series also involving Australia and Pakistan in July and Rajput has his job cut out, especially as his deal is for three months to start with, and might be extended based on the results.
However, to get the results right straightaway will be a tricky task for the former India opening batsman, who is gung-ho about the possibilities.
“For now, the deal is for three months. After that, if both parties agree, it will be extended. I am really happy with this, because this is what I was looking for after the job with Afghanistan,” Rajput was quoted as saying by the International Cricket Council.
“Afghanistan did exceptionally well when I was the coach there, so the people in Zimbabwe must have seen something that impressed them. But yes, it’s a challenge. Challenges get the best out of me. I think people know me for that.”
Zimbabwe recently failed to qualify for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 and then removed their entire coaching staff in a bid to start afresh.
“My first job will be to get the players ready for the triangular series. I have not yet met the players; I will go there and slowly find out everything, meet them, understand them, motivate them.”
“There is a lot of talent there, but I need to turn things around quickly and hopefully take them to the next level. The main thing is to get the players together and get them to perform as a unit,” he added.