Aavishkar Salvi. (Twitter Photo)MUMBAI: Former Mumbai players continue to bag plum coaching jobs in domestic cricket. The latest in the list is former India fast bowler Aavishkar Salvi, who was on Tuesday named the Punjab senior men team’s head coach for the upcoming season.
Salvi has been the bowling coach of Oman, who qualified for the T20 World Cup in UAE last year, since September 2019 on "an assignment basis". He was also the head coach of Puducherry in the 2018-19 and 2020-21 seasons. In April-May 2018, he also conducted a camp for Andhra.
"A couple of months back, the Punjab Cricket Association had put up an ad on their website, inviting applications for the post of Punjab head coach. I was at the National Cricket Academy at that time, and I applied after seeing that. I'm glad that things panned out well after that," Salvi told TOI.
Punjab have a bevy of players who are currently playing for India, like batting gun Shubman Gill and left-arm pacer Arshdeep Singh, or have played for India, like seamer Siddarth Kaul and Mandeep Singh.
"It's a really exciting opportunity. It’s an established team in domestic cricket. The kind of quality that Punjab have in their squad, it will be interesting to work with them. They've a lot of players who're a part of the India A or IPL teams. Some of them have played for India in the shorter format. It’s a fine blend of both experience and youth," said the Mumbaikar. "I'll go to Chandigarh after a couple of days and meet all the stakeholders, watch a local tournament that is going on there. I want to see the players there," he said.
"I would also like to take advice from the two stalwarts of Punjab and India cricket-Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh-on how to go about my job. They've been successful at the highest level, so they know Punjab cricket inside out," he said. “I’ve learnt a bit of Punjabi while playing cricket,” he grinned.
Salvi, who played four ODIs in 2003 before injuries plagued his career, featured in 62 First-Class matches, 52 List-A matches and 19 T20 games for Mumbai. He also played for Delhi Daredevils in the IPL in 2009. He began his coaching career post retirement in 2018 when he became the head coach of Pondicherry in their maiden domestic season. He takes over the Punjab job from former Maharashtra batsman Surendra Bhave, under whom Punjab reached the Ranji Trophy quarter-finals last season. Salvi isn’t sure if he’ll continue in the Oman job. “If it is clashing with India’s domestic schedule, then I can’t go to Oman. In any case, my job there is on a series by series basis.
“Oman are currently topping the table in ICC CWC league2 after having played all their matches. The top 3 teams in the table will play in next year’s ODI World Cup,” he informed.
Aavishkar's elder brother Omkar Salvi is the bowling coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders' academy.