Laxman appointed India’s interim coach after Dravid tested positive for COVID

VVS Laxman will take over as India’s caretaker manager for the Asian Cup after head coach Rahul Dravid tested positive for COVID-19, the country’s Board of Cricket (BCCI) said on Wednesday.

Laxman, who is also head of cricket at the National Cricket Academy, had spearheaded the second-rate side that defeated Zimbabwe in a one-day, three-game international series this month.

Dravid tested positive on Tuesday ahead of the team’s departure for the United Arab Emirates and will join them once he has tested negative and been cleared by the BCCI medical team.

“Laxman … will oversee the team’s preparation in the absence of Rahul Dravid, who tested positive for COVID-19 prior to the team’s departure to the UAE,” BCCI Secretary Jay Shah said in a statement.

“Laxman has joined forces with the squad in Dubai along with vice-captain KL Rahul, Deepak Hooda and Avesh Khan, who have traveled from Harare.”

India will begin their Asian Cup defenses with Sunday’s clash with arch-rivals Pakistan in the six-team Twenty20 tournament.