coach of the men's national team, after the former India international stepped into the role
on an interim basis in June.
"It is an honour and privilege to work with Zimbabwe Cricket and I am really pleased to be
given this opportunity to take this team to the next level, to work hard and ensure we make a
difference in the coming years," Rajput said after his appointment on a permanent basis.
Rajput represented India in two Tests and four one-day internationals, the last of which
came in 1987. He continued to play first-class cricket until 1999, making 110 appearances
and amassing 7,988 runs at 49.30, an ICC report on Friday said.
Rajput has successfully coached India in the first edition of the ICC World T20 in 2007 and
followed his good work later with Afghanistan. In between, he also coached Mumbai Indians
in the inaugural Indian Premier League season and mentored them this year.
Tavengwa Mukhlani, the ZC Chairman, also congratulated Rajput on his appointment, saying,
"We are thrilled to appoint Lalchand as the substantive head coach of Zimbabwe's senior
men's national cricket team. Lalchand has a wealth of experience and an outstanding track
record of success throughout his career.
"He has identified, nurtured and developed some of the best young talents in world cricket,
from coaching a young India side that won the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 in 2007 through
to recently moulding Afghanistan into a formidable team that eventually earned Test status.
"His hard-working and passionate approach and his sense of values on and off the pitch
make him the ideal person to take us forward."
Hamilton Masakadza, the Zimbabwe captain, who led his side under Rajput's guidance in
the tri-nation T20I series against Australia and Pakistan, also welcomed the appointment.
"I think it is a positive move from ZC. Appointing someone of his experience and stature
bodes well for the future of our cricket as he is a really positive coach who brings a lot of
positive energy and wants to see positive results for the team," Masakadza said.
"I have been very impressed with his work ethic and attention to detail. We are in the
middle of a training camp where he has really put the guys through their paces," he said.
"We have worked on a lot of specifics and put a lot of time into our games. The boys
have responded really well to the rigorous training schedule and we are already starting
to see a lot of improvement," Masakadza added.
Rajput's upcoming full-time coaching assignments include away series against South
Africa and Bangladesh later this year.(UNI)