VVS Laxman will take over as India s interim coach for the Asia Cup after head coach Rahul Dravid tested positive for COVID-19, the country s cricket board (BCCI) said on Wednesday.

Laxman, who is also the head of cricket at the National Cricket Academy, had led the second-string side that beat Zimbabwe in a three-match one-day international series this month.

Dravid tested positive on Tuesday before the team s departure to the United Arab Emirates and will join them once he tests negative and is cleared by the BCCI medical team. read more

"Laxman... will oversee the team s preparation in the absence of Rahul Dravid, who tested positive for COVID-19 before the team s departure to the UAE," BCCI secretary Jay Shah said in a statement.

"Laxman has linked up with the squad in Dubai along with vice-captain KL Rahul, Deepak Hooda and Avesh Khan, who travelled from Harare."

India will begin their Asia Cup defence with Sunday s clash with arch-rivals Pakistan in the six-team Twenty20 tournament.