Amit Pagnis appointed Mumbai coach for 2020-21 domestic season

Amit Pagnis appointed Mumbai coach for 2020-21 domestic season

Pagnis is expected to meet the selectors on Friday, December 18 and his contract ends on March 31, 2021.

Mumbai Ranji team
Mumbai Ranji team. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Former Mumbai and Railways cricketer Amit Pagnis has been appointed the Mumbai coach for the 2020-21 domestic season, which gets underway with the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy. In the tournament, Mumbai are placed in Group E alongside Puducherry, Delhi, Kerala, Andhra and Haryana. After loads of deliberation, the T20 league is set to start on January 10.

Pagnis replaced Vinayak Samant, the former Mumbai wicketkeeper, who was there as the coach in the last two seasons. He was roped in by the Cricket Improvement Committee, comprising of chairman Lalchand Rajput along with Sameer Dighe and Raju Kulkarni. Pagnis is expected to meet the selectors on Friday, December 18 and his contract ends on March 31, 2021.

In his career, Pagnis played 95 first-class, 43 List A and eight T20s from 1995-96 to 2008. The left-hander notched over 7,300 runs with 14 centuries and 39 half-centuries to show for his efforts. His last competitive match was in the 2008-09 edition of the Ranji Trophy against Baroda.

Mumbai cricket brings in Salil Ankola

Earlier, the CIC had appointed the selection panel, which is currently headed by former Indian cricketer Salil Ankola, who played one Test and 20 ODIs between 1989 and 1997. Ankola plied his trade in acting but talked about wanting to come back to cricket.

“I have been thinking of making a comeback for the last five years and in the past one year I have spoken to a lot of my friends seriously with the wish to come back and do something for Mumbai Cricket in any capacity for that matter,” Ankola was quoted as saying in ESPNcricinfo.

“My heart lies here and I dream to contribute to Mumbai’s domestic success especially that the results have not been great for sometime. I hope I can play a role in making Mumbai Ranji champions once again,” he added.

Mumbai are the most successful team in the Ranji Trophy, having won the title as many as 41 times. But since the 2015-16 season, Mumbai haven’t won the trophy and couldn’t even qualify for the knockouts in the last two seasons.

Back in 2018-19, they won the Vijay Hazare Trophy, but have underperformed in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in recent years.