Uttar Pradesh name Somasundar as the new head coach with immediate effect

Uttar Pradesh name Somasundar as the new head coach with immediate effect

Meanwhile, Somasundar's former Karnataka teammate, Mansur Ali Khan, has been named as the bowling and fielding coach.

Sujith Somasundar
Sujith Somasundar. (Photo Source: The Hindu)

The Uttar Pradesh Cricket Association (UPCA) has named former Indian cricketer Somasundar Sujith as their new head coach with immediate effect. The former Indian opener is set to replace Mritunjay Tripathi as the head coach of the team. Meanwhile, Somasundar’s former Karnataka teammate, Mansur Ali Khan, has been named as the bowling and fielding coach. Mansur will be replacing Ashish Winston Zaidi in the team setup.

The decision to appoint new coaches has come after team Uttar Pradesh failed to register a single win in the Ranji Trophy season this year. They finished at the penultimate position in their group. Now, both Somasundar and Mansur have been appointed as the coaches of the team for the two limited overs competition this season – the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy Twenty20 tournament followed by the 50-over Vijay Hazare Trophy.

The first assignment begins on January 7. Interestingly, the UPCA had approached former cricketer Vikram Rathour to suggest the name for the new coach. Rathour and Somasundar had made their national debuts back in 1996. It was Rathour who suggested the name of Soma for the post. Later, Soma suggested the name of his former Karnataka teammate Mansur for the post of the bowling coach. As per the quotes in Wisden India, he quoted that he shares great chemistry with Mansur.

“MAK and I go back a long way. When I was the captain of Karnataka, he served me a lot as a bowler. We have that trust between us. Even as a coach for Karnataka, he was an able ally of JAK. He is a silent worker, an unsung hero. His presence adds a lot of value. You need a good coaching unit for the players to deliver on the field,” Somasundar quoted.

On working with Suresh Raina

When asked about his preparations on working with Suresh Raina, the captain of the side, Somasundar noted that he has never worked with him before. He, however, conceded that he is not taking any pre conceived notion in his mind before joining the side. He is looking forward to the challenge.

“I have not worked with Suresh Raina in the past, but have heard that he is a good person to work with. I know that the UP boys are a talented lot. I would really not go with any pre-conceived notion. I want to go there with an open mind and see what is missing, if at all there is anything missing. If they have not done well as a team, then I will find out what is missing and address that,” he quipped.

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