Ever since India were knocked out of the World Cup, there has been widespread speculation around the future of MS Dhoni. Will he retire? Will he be spoken to by the selectors?
The answer might come on July 19, when the five-member selection panel picks India's squads for the tour of the West Indies in August-September. The month-long Caribbean tour is set to run from August 3 to September 4 and comprise three T20Is, three ODIs and two Tests.
Dhoni's spot in the Indian team has been a source of constant debate in the last 12 months and intensified during the World Cup, during which even Sachin Tendulkar questioned the intent he showed during his innings against Afghanistan. India captain Virat Kohli tried to douse the flames of the debate every time he was asked for his views, saying the dressing room retained full confidence in Dhoni.
ESPNcricinfo understands Dhoni has not spoken about his future with the team management or selectors.
In addition to Dhoni, the selectors are also bound to manage the workloads of the key players, especially strike bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami. Bumrah was India's best bowler at the World Cup, and perhaps their joint-best player in terms of impact alongside Rohit Sharma. Shami was India's second-highest wicket-taker behind Bumrah, with 14 wickets at an average of 13.78 and strike rate of 15.0, and was a constant threat with his pace and seam movement. He was rested from India's final group match against Sri Lanka and left out from the semi-final against New Zealand, with Bhuvneshwar Kumar preferred for his death bowling and ability with the bat.
The selectors will also verify the fitness of Shikhar Dhawan and Vijay Shankar, who were both injured during the World Cup and had to leave the tournament midway. Both players are currently at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, undergoing rehabilitation.
BCCI invites applications for coaching staff
The West Indies tour will also mark the end of the tenure of India's coaching staff comprising Ravi Shastri (head coach), Sanjay Bangar (assistant coach), Bharat Arun (bowling coach) and R Sridhar (fielding coach). Originally the World Cup was meant to be the last assignment for the coaching staff, but the BCCI extended their tenure so that they remained in charge for the West Indies tour.
On Tuesday, the BCCI put out an advertisement seeking applications for the entire roster of support staff. Applications have been invited for the positions of head coach, batting coach, bowling coach, fielding coach, physiotherapist, strength and conditioning coach, and administrative manager, with the deadline being 5pm on July 30.
The BCCI said that the current members of the coaching staff would get "automatic entry in the recruitment process", but it's unclear as yet if Shastri, Bangar, Arun, Sridhar and Sunil Subramanian, the manager, will re-apply for their positions.
Physiotherapist Patrick Farhart and strength and conditioning coach Shankar Basu have both opted not to renew their contracts, and ended their association with the team after the World Cup.
For the position of the head coach, who should be below 60 years of age, the BCCI wants candidates who apply to have a BCCI Level 3 qualification. Failing that, the person should have played at least 30 Tests or 50 ODIs.
The support staff - with the exception of the team manager - have all had long stints with the team. While Shastri, Bangar, Arun and Sridhar joined the team in mid-2014 for the limited-overs leg of the tour of England after a heavy loss in the Test series, Farhart and Basu had been part of the set-up since July 2015. Shastri, originally brought in as team director, and Arun were not part of the support staff for a year, from mid-2016 to 2017, when Anil Kumble was in charge, but both returned afterwards.
The BCCI's elections are scheduled for October 22, which will also mean the exit of the Supreme-Court-appointed Committee of Administrators, and CoA chairman Vinod Rai had clarified earlier that until the elections were held, the body would continue to monitor and authorise cricketing operations, including matters related to the appointment or renewal of coaching staff.