India's cricket chiefs on Tuesday delayed a decision on naming a coach for the national team, but insisted they would make an appointment ahead of next month's Australian tour.
"We are definitely going to appoint a coach before the team leaves for Australia," said Mohinder Pandove, an official from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
India have been without a regular coach since April, when former Australian captain Greg Chappell resigned after the South Asian nation's shock first-round exit from the World Cup in the Caribbean.
Three men have been in temporary charge of India since then after South Africa's Graham Ford, who coaches English county Kent, turned down an offer from the cash-rich BCCI.
Former all-rounder Ravi Shastri managed the team for the tour of Bangladesh in May. Veteran Chandu Borde, 73, took over during the visit to Ireland and England from July to September.
Former Mumbai first-class cricketer Lalchand Rajput then took charge at the inaugural Twenty20 Worlds in South Africa in September, which India won, and continued for the home one-dayers against Australia and Pakistan.
Pandove said on Tuesday that Rajput, 45, will continue for the Test series against Pakistan starting on November 22 as they search for a permanent appointee before the Australian tour.
India, who leave for Australia in the third week of December, are due to play four Tests and a limited-overs tri-series also featuring Sri Lanka on the 11-week tour that ends in early March.
The BCCI advertised for a coach last month. But media reports said none of the 12 applicants impressed the selection committee, which includes former captains Sunil Gavaskar, Srinivas Venkataraghavan and Shastri.
Former Sri Lanka and Bangladesh coach Dav Whatmore, who was once a strong contender for the Indian job, was instead appointed director of the Bangalore-based National Cricket Academy last month.