Coaches make an intriguing part of the team and their contributions to the squads are absolutely priceless. Even though they do not get to grab the limelight too frequently like their playing counterparts, yet they strategize like none other.
However, they were also a part of certain playing XI at one point in time and their reign as the players were equally prolific. Their coaching reign produced even better lore and at times a few tragic moments as well.
Here is the best XI of the coaches who were phenomenal players in their heydays and went onto change the game as Coaches too.
Openers: Gary Kirsten and Justin Langer
Gary Kirsten was one of the most dangerous openers that South Africa ever produced and he would simply score at will. When he arrived as the coach, his reign with the Indian cricket team saw them lifting the 2011 World Cup.
Justin Langer was handed over the reins of the Australian cricket team when they were in absolute shambles after the Sandpaper scandal. However, he pulled off a phenomenal turnaround and then brought them back on track. His tenure as a player made him a very special asset to the Australian side.
Middle Order: Rahul Dravid, Javed Miandad, Stephen Fleming, Andy Flower, Jonty Rhodes, Kapil Dev
Rahul Dravid is the current coach of the Indian cricket team and his reign as the preceptor of the side has yielded handsome results. Despite Team India’s failure to seize an ICC trophy, he has been crucial in developing the Indian players and moulding them into an unstoppable unit.
Javed Miandad’s coaching stint with the Pakistani cricket team was marked with a lot of controversies and things ended on a poor note as well. However, as a player he was probably one of the finest players that Pakistan ever made.
Stephen Fleming hasn’t coached any of the international teams but his reign as the gaffer of Melbourne Stars and Chennai Super Kings and the fact that the latter claimed their fifth IPL trophy of late, will speak volumes of the man’s calibre.
Not many Zimbabwean players have the laurel of serving as a team’s coach but Andy Flower was always an exception. He became the second foreign coach in England’s history and was the only one to lift the World Cup with the team. His batting days for Zimbabwe turned into a living nightmare for the bowlers.
Jonty Rhodes is obviously one of the finest fielders to have taken the field and is still quoted as a benchmark of fielding standards. He has so far trained the likes of Punjab Kings, Sweden and currently is with the Lucknow Super Giants as their fielding coach.
Kapil Dev’s coaching stint wasn’t as glittering as his playing days for nation. But being handed over the coaching reign under the captaincy of Sach, Kapil Dev led India from the sidelines in 1999. Unfortunately, his days were numbered after India started failing miserably during this period.
Bowlers: Ashley Giles, Allan Donald, Wasim Akram
Ashley Giles revolutionized the spin department for England and was hailed as one of the top bowlers of the side but his coaching days didn’t yield significant results for the three lions and he was soon shown the door.
The White Lightning’s contributions towards the game in his playing days were absolutely massive. Sadly, as a coach for South Africa, he wasn’t the pink of choices and his days with the Pune Warriors India was equally besmirched with infamy.
Wasim Akram’s coaching career was very limited and sadly it had to end due to political interventions. Back in 2010, he was the bowling consultant of KKR and the Knight showed resilience under his reign but then once again politics came between him and the Kolkata franchise that eventually forced him to part ways.