Kolkata: Beleaguered Kolkata Knight Riders have dumped their controversial Australian coach John Buchanan, according to team insiders.
Even as the KKR top brass refused to confirm the development, sources claimed that the Shah Rukh Khan-owned side informed this to the coach, who now stands sacked after the second edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) even though he had a three-year contract.
Source added the team was now considering Buchanan's likely replacement with names like Dave Whatmore, Steve Waugh and Lalchand Rajput doing the rounds.
When contacted, team CEO Joy Bhattacharya said he was not in a position to comment on the episode.
Shah Rukh's media manager too declined to comment on this saying, "We don't have any such reports. Both Shah Rukh Khan and (co-owner) Jay Mehta are out of station, so it's difficult to comment right now. Whenever, we get any confirmation, we will let you know."
However, the source said the Buchanan chapter was closed soon after the Australian landed a role with English and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
"He (Buchanan) is joining the Englishmen for their Ashes preparation on June 28 in a short-term consultancy role with the ECB, which could develop into a full-time post," the insider said.
"Buchanan was never in Shah Rukh's good books, especially after the team's disastrous show in South Africa. In fact, he (SRK) refused to meet the coach and refused him an appointment at his bungalow in Mumbai," claimed the source.
National Cricket Academy (NCA) head coach Whatmore, meanwhile, dismissed rumours and said he was not being approached for the job.
"I am currently employed by the BCCI. I am not in talks with anyone," the former Sri Lankan coach told PTI.
Buchanan had a controversial stint with KKR in the second edition when he floated his "multiple captaincy" idea that did not go down well with former captain Sourav Ganguly.
As it turned out, Ganguly was eventually replaced by New Zealand wicketkeeper-batsman Brendon McCullum as the team finished last in the IPL 2.
Buchanan boasted of a huge support staff that included his son Michael that also created a flutter.