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Brad Hodge to coach Rajkot in Indian Premier League

Veteran Australian batsman Brad Hodge has been confirmed as coach of the new Indian Premier League franchise in Rajkot, while fellow limited-overs specialist Suresh Raina will be captain.

Pune and Rajkot were unveiled in December as the new teams in the lucrative Twenty20 competition, replacing Chennai and Rajasthan, who were handed two-year suspensions for their involvement in an illegal betting scandal.

Rajkot franchise owner Keshav Bansal said having played for three IPL teams, Hodge was familiar with the popular tournament.

"We finalised Brad Hodge as the team coach on the basis of his successful contribution to the Australian national team and his excellent stint in the IPL," Bansal said on Tuesday.

"I am confident that our team will benefit immensely from his guidance and mentorship."

Bansal said the new Rajkot team would be called the Gujarat Lions.


"Suresh Raina is a remarkable player with an impeccable record in all formats of the game.

"His extensive experience combined with his great leadership skills will help us in putting together a winning strategy for the team," Bansal said.

The 41-year-old Hodge captained the Adelaide Strikers in this year's Big Bash League, while also taking on an assistant coaching role.