Brad Hodge, ex-Australian cricketer, is appointed as the head coach of IPL team Kings XI Punjab. He served his stint as the head coach of Gujarat Lions in the previous two seasons. The Punjab team was coached by Sanjay Bangar, ending his contract in December 2016. During 2017 season, Virender Sehwag took over the squad as an informal mentor, which had a mixed result. Sehwag is the director of cricket for the franchise.
Hodge has been an impressive coach in IPL since 2016. In the early year, the Australian senior cricketer mentored Gujarat Lions to be the highest run-getter in the group phase. The head coach is still an active player in BBL, featuring in Melbourne Renegades in the upcoming season of 2017-18. He is one of the most desirable coaches in T20 franchise fraternity around the globe. Hodge signed with Punjab for three years. Also, Ness Wadia, the co-owner of Kings Punjab wants him to build the team. Hodge is 42 years old now.
In another report, Indian Premier League gained a rare accolade becoming the only domestic T20 league to be recognized in Future Tour Program. It means, international cricket hosted under ICC will pause for a period of two months for IPL, in April and May. In fact, the trend is being followed unofficially since the debut season of IPL in 2008. As per an internal document of ICC, IPL league is listed alongside the major events like World Cup and Champions Trophy.
BCCI presented in FTP in an ICC meet at Singapore. Prior to the meeting, ICC General Manager Geoff Allardice had a discussion with BCCI CEO Rahul Johri. Still, a glitch in IPL dates must be worked out. Per new regulations of Supreme Court, India players cannot participate in any tournament in 15 days before and after IPL, but other tournaments start before the limit time right after the end of IPL. This would mean, India players forfeiting other international tournaments held 15 days before and after IPL. The issue will be discussed in BCCI and resolved soon.
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