Former New Zealand skipper Stephen Fleming has been officially appointed as the coach of new IPL Pune franchise, who had also roped in MS Dhoni during the December draft of the ninth edition of the IPL.
Pune and Rajkot, who are the new IPL teams in fray, came into the picture with Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals suspended for a period of two years due to their involvement in the 2013 IPL spot-fixing case. Pune, who apart from signing CSK players such as Ravichandran Ashwin and Faf du Plessis, have been smart in acquiring the signature of Fleming, who enjoys a good relationship with Dhoni, having coached the Super Kings franchise for a number of years.
The Pune team are going to expect quality things from the duo – Dhoni and Fleming – as the two combined well to help CSK win the IPL twice.
"I warmly welcome Stephen Fleming as the chief coach. He has been remarkably successful as a player in the international arena and I firmly believe that his technical knowhow, perseverance and organisation skills will work wonders for our team. I have tremendous faith in his leadership ability and believe that it would have a positive impact on our team members," team owner Sanjiv Goenka, chairman of RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group said in a statement.
The Pune owners have taken the wise decision of announcing their coach well ahead of the auction, which takes place in February. Now, Fleming can give his inputs for the IPL 2016 auction.
With Pune announcing their coach, the onus now falls on the other new entrant, Rajkot, to appoint their gaffer. Reports have suggested Gary Kirsten as favourite to take the helm at Team Rajkot.