Who are the Best Cricket Coaches in The World | The Greats and Controversial Coaches in History

Who are the Best Cricket Coaches in The World | The Greats and Controversial Coaches in History

Coaches in Cricket play a unique and important part in the game which often goes unnoticed unlike in the game of Football. The best Cricket coaches in the world bring in results and make a team consistently follow practises with clear deliverables.

Who are the Best Cricket Coaches in The World

Successful coaches take their team to new heights and the results of their coaching is seen long, even after they are not part of the team. In contrast, coaches can also do harm to the team. It could be due to lack of understanding of culture, language and other factors like not taking the other think tanks within the system into confidence. There are instances in the past where poor coaching and captaincy have created confused team action which resulted in games being lost from winning positions. While a successful coaching stint helps the overall growth of the system, it can be the contrary when it fails and the rebuilding phase may take years.

This article will also list some of the best coaches who transformed their team and took the team to new levels.


Presented by: Raghunath Nair

Date: 25/07/2023


Cricket Coaches are the unsung heroes when a particular team does well and the first person in the firing line when the team performs badly on field. Coaching is one of the thankless assignments in Cricket and often a performing team hardly gets a mention of the coaching staff’s contribution.

Good coaches in the National / Franchise team fine tunes the small flaws of the player which creeps into the game and do not try to completely change the player’s style. Coaches have to keep abreast of all the new technology which modernizes the game and use the modern techniques of coaching.

The Good coach focus on changes which will affect an overall growth in the team to become a winning and consistent one.  This does not necessarily be on the physical front but more to do with mental preparedness to manage stress and overall expectations.

The stress and burden of expectations on the coach joining a new team, who are at the top of the table or at the bottom remains the same. So coaching is never an easy job.

Football Coach

In Football, coaches have 100% control of the proceedings before, during and after the game, Cricket coaches are more involved during the preparation of the game and later post-match assessment of the game.

During the preparation of the game, coaches play a vital role in selecting the playing eleven and deciding on the team combination with the captain. Conditions of the pitch and the opponent is also taken into account.

Team plan is made up and the coaches ensures that each and every member of the team are in the same page regarding team plans and strategy for the game.

Coaches need to think on their toes and make quick changes in strategies in case of team plans are not working as planned.

Cricket Boards having successful Cricket teams today prefer to get professional coaches with wealth of coaching experience who are updated with modern coaching technique as now coaching is a very technical subject. If the coaches are from a different country, they need to adapt quickly to the local environment and culture. A good coach will need to understand players individually and access their individual coaching needs. The coaches set the vision along with the captain of the team and he needs to have a buy in of every member of the team, be it playing or non-playing ones.

Coaches need to be a guide and a teacher to make every member of the team perform to their best of the abilities and be consistent in that.

Here are some of the Best Coaches in Cricket history who has left a mark in Coaching

John Buchanan

John Buchanan

Nicknamed as Ned Flanders, John Buchanan is regarded as the best coach in Cricket History. After 5 years of domestic coaching, John was appointed Coach of the Australian Cricket team in 1999.

Under his coaching Australia won two World Cups (2003, 2007) and one ICC Champions Trophy (2006). He also was Coach of the Australian team winning a Test series in India in 2006. He also Coached the Kolkatta Knight Riders in the Indian premier league.

Bob Woolmer

Bob Woolmer

Bob Woolmer was a former English Cricketer and regarded as one of the coaching greats. He coached South Africa and later coached the Pakistan Cricket team.

South Africa was a formidable and a successful Test Playing Country during coach Bob Woolmer’s tenure. He also was Pakistan’s most successful coaches by a long way. Apart from Pakistan’s embarrassing defeat to Ireland in the 2007 World cup, Bob Woolmer stint as the Pakistan coach was a big success.

Gary Kirsten

Gary Kirsten

Very few successful international players have transitioned to become equally successful coach. Gary Kirsten was one of them.

He was one of the most successful coaches for Team India and under his Coaching the Indian team lifted the 2011 Worldcup.

Gary Kirsten also had a great working relation with Indian captain MS Dhoni which led to a successful partnership.

After 2011, Gary Kirsten coached the South African National Team for 2 years. He currently coaches the Gujarat Titans in the Indian Premier League.

John Wright

John Wright

John Wright was a coach who adapted to India and Indian Cricketer quickly which helped him to have an excellent rapport with Indian Captain Saurav Ganguly. Under his coaching India reached the ICC Worldcup Finals in 2003.

John Wright was coach of India during the India Australia Series win including the famous Kolkatta test match win when the team won after being to followed on after the first innings.

 Andy Flower

Andy Flower

Andy Flower was one England’s most successful coaches. Under his Coaching, England won the 2010 ICC T20 Worldcup and he built a very strong Test Team which won the Ashes Series in 2009, 2011 and 2013.

SuperSports Note: Andy Flower is one of the probables to coach Team India after the term of the current Head Coach.


Trevor Bayliss

Trevor Bayliss

Trevor Bayliss should be credited for a revolutionary change brought in Cricket with an aggressive style of play. The coach gave the team the freedom to be ultra-aggressive which proved to be a winning approach with England winning the 2019 One Day International Worldcup.

England later on used a similar approach in Test under coach Brendon McCullum now famously known as the Bazball Approach

Dav Whatmore

Dav Whatmore

Dav Whatmore was the coach of the Sri Lankan National team when they won their maiden One Day International in 1996. Dave Whatmore also coached Bangladesh and Pakistan as Head Coach. He was part of the team when Bangladesh won their first Test Match in 2005.

As coach, The Pakistan team won the 2012 Asia Cup. Dave Whatmore is one of the most sought-after coaches in the world.

Controversial Coaches

Some of the Big International names who have been successful as a Cricketer failed to be great coaches.

Controversial Coaches

Greg Chappel’s vision as a Cricket coach did more harm to Indian Cricket as he was unsuccessful in man management skills and unable to get supporters for his vision within the team. It was also a case of cultural indifference to blame.

Pakistani Legend Javed Miandad had a torrid time as a coach for the Pakistan team. Players had revolted against Miandad after the coach allegedly made baseless match fixing allegation on some senior players. A legend in his playing days, Javed Miandad could not bring the same magic in coaching.

England Coach Peter Moores is a perfect example of a coach and captain not being in the same page. England Captain Kevin Peterson and Peter Moores didn’t have a cordial relation resulting in the sacking of the coach after an ECB inquiry.

Romesh Pawar’s controversial decisions as coach saw the Indian women’s Cricket team rebel against the coach. Melting point came when India’s highest run getter in Cricket, Mithali Raj was benched in the semi-finals of the ICC Worldcup.

This controversy turned ugly and saw the removal of the coach. Romesh Pawar did join the team again after rumours of a compromise was made till the next coach was to be announced.

Mickey Arthur famously dropped the quartet of Mitchell Johnson, James Pattinson, Shane Watson, and Usman Khawaja from the Mohali test against India for failing to complete the homework given to them by the coach. This was the famous Homework Gate scandal which saw the immediate sacking of the coach after the series.

Kapil Dev, probably may go down as India’s worst coach. Legendary status as a player was the only reason for Kapil getting the coaching assignment which proved to be a wrong one.  This was during Sachin Tendulkar’s poor stint as captain of India. Losing badly in the Australian series and a home series defeat against South Africa questioned Kapil’s ability as a coach. During this time, the Indian Legend was also accused of match fixing by his former team-mate Manoj Prabhakar during their playing days which eventually forced Kapil to resign from his coaching role.

Eventually, while the match fixing allegation was cleared, Kapil Dev’s timid and ineffective coaching style was widely criticised even by Sachin Tendulkar.

While Rahul Dravid is India’s Current National Head Coach, his current stint as Head Coach has not done enough to be noticed and write about. Please read our article on Rahul Dravid – The Coach


Coaching is one of the most thankless job and the most under rated jobs in Cricket. While coaches in Football is always directing the field of play, the Cricket coach during the match can only observe and note the proceedings of the game. He has a very little role in what happens during the game. He goes back to the drawing board and again prepares for future course correction.

While he remains to always be blamed in case of a failure, he is seldom credited for a win.

Coaches of the national team cannot develop a Cricketer but his job is to produce consistent performance from the team. Players are expected to be ready at the international stage and the role of the Coach is to motivate and drive the team objectives. An International Coach has a to be a great Man-Manager and work on the mental aspect of the game and make individual players mentally strong to face the pressures of an international game.


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