Australian cricket icon Ricky Ponting has disclosed that he was recently approached regarding the prospect of succeeding Rahul Dravid as the next head coach of the Indian cricket team.

Ponting, who just completed his seventh season as coach of an Indian Premier League franchise, saw his Delhi Capitals team narrowly miss out on a playoff spot this season.

Despite his previous coaching roles in the IPL with Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals, as well as interim coaching duties for Australia’s national T20I team, Ponting has thus far refrained from committing to the demanding responsibilities of coaching a high-profile national team on a permanent basis.

He is also the head of strategy at Hobart Hurricanes for Australia’s Big Bash League and head coach of Washington Freedom in the US Major League Cricket tournament.

“I’ve seen a lot of reports about it,” Ponting told the International Cricket Council. “Normally these things pop up on social media before you even know about them, but there were a few little one-on-one conversations during the IPL, just to get a level of interest from me as to whether I would do it.

“I’d love to be a senior coach of a national team, but with the other things that I have in my life and wanting to have a bit of time at home…everyone knows if you take a job working with the Indian team you can’t be involved in an IPL team, so it would take that out of it as well.

Ponting said being a national coach would mean devoting up to 11 months of the year to the job.

“As much as I’d like to do it, it just doesn't fit into my lifestyle right now and the things that I really enjoy doing,” he added.

The India coach job, currently held by Rahul Dravid, falls vacant after the T20 World Cup in June with the Board of Control for Cricket in India seeking a replacement until the next 50-over World Cup in 2027.

Dravid commenced his initial two-year tenure following the conclusion of the 2021 T20 World Cup. Originally slated to conclude after the 2023 ODI World Cup in November of last year, he agreed to an extension until the culmination of the forthcoming T20 World Cup.

Local media reports said former India batter Gautam Gambhir, former New Zealand skipper Stephen Fleming and Australian Justin Langer had also been sounded out for the job.

India have not won a global title since the 2013 Champions Trophy, with the team then being coached by Zimbabwe’s Duncan Fletcher.

With inputs from AFP