UTT 2018: Francisco Santos and N Ravichandran to coach Maharashtra United
The Rajesh Wadhawan Group owned Ultimate Table Tennis franchise Maharashtra United on Monday announced Francisco Santos and N Ravichandran as the coaches for the 2018 edition.
Each franchisee was allocated a number from 1 to 6 using a double randomization procedure. The sequence of selections in the draft was designed to ensure a fair and equitable selection order. Maharashtra United got 6th pick in first round where they picked Francisco Santos and 1st pick in round two where they went for N Ravichandran.
Speaking after signing the two coaches, team CEO Gaurav Modwel said, “We are pleased to have Santos and Ravichandran on board. In the two, we have an ideal mix of international and domestic wisdom for our team, which will be critical going into player draft. Santos & Ravichandran are also capable of bringing out the best from the team and we look forward to working them to deliver a successful campaign this season.”
A former Portuguese National player, Santos helped Portugal bag bronze medals in both the singles and doubles in the European Youth Championships. He then led Portugal to 2nd place in the European Championships in 2017. But his highlight would surely be leading Falcons TTC to the title in the inaugural edition of UTT in 2017.
“We have seen what Ultimate Table Tennis has done to the sport and Maharashtra United’s campaign last season was impressive. With a crisper format this year, it will get exciting this season and I look forward to the player draft and then the season,” said Franciso Santos after joining Maharashtra United.
Into coaching since 1994, Ravichandran became a name to reckon during his stint with the National team from 2013-2017. He was a part of the Indian team that won 3 Gold, 7 Silver and 7 Bronze medals at the 2015 Commonwealth TT Championships. He also was managing the doubles team of Mouma Das/Manika Batra (Women) and the doubles team of Anthony Amalraj/G Sathiyan (Men) to a bronze at the 2016 Czech Open and 2016 Bulgaria Open respectively. Last season he was managing the Dabang Smashers T.T.C.
Speaking about joining forces with Santos, N Ravichandran said, “Along with Santos, our aim is to make Maharashtra United a consistent side, one that challenges every team for the ultimate trophy. It’s now time to put our heads together so we get the best possible team in player draft.”