'If Gautam Gambhir applied…': Sourav Ganguly gives his verdict on World Cup winner who replaces Rahul Dravid as India head coach

Gautam Gambhir is currently associated with KKR as a mentor.  (AFP Photo)

Gautam Gambhir is currently associated with KKR as a mentor. (AFP Photo)

The BCCI is on the lookout for a new head coach of the Indian men's cricket team with Rahul Dravid's tenure set to end after the T20 World Cup.

Gautam Gambhir continues to be backed to succeed Rahul Dravid as the next head coach of the Indian men's cricket team, with Sourav Ganguly predicting he will be a “good coach”.

The BCCI invited applications for the position last month, with the deadline being May 27. Many high-profile names have been linked to the role, including Gambhir, Ricky Ponting, Justin Langer and Stephen Fleming, among others.

“I am in favor of an Indian coach because we have a huge amount of talent in our country, extremely skilled players who have done wonders for Indian cricket and rightly they should be part of the system,” said Ganguly at an event.

However, Ganguly questioned whether Gambhir had even applied for the job.

“…did he apply?” I really don’t know because he has to apply first and only then he will get the job… I think (May) 27 was the deadline to apply,” he said.

“Obviously, the BCCI also has the right to extend (the deadline). If he applies and if he wants to, and I say if he applies and if he wants to, he will be a very good candidate,” he added.

Gambhir returned to Kolkata Knight Riders, a franchise where he won two IPL trophies as captain, in the role of mentor and the team won its third title.

Ganguly thinks Gambhir will be a good candidate.

“If Gambhir applies – you can see him on TV – he worked for KKR this year. I was with Delhi (Capitals), you can see the hunger, passion and desire to win and I will be happy if he applies and if the board decides to give him the job, I think it's is a good candidate,” Ganguly said.

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Media reports claim that Gambhir is the frontrunner for the top job, but there has been no official word from the former Indian batter or the BCCI if he has even applied for the job.

BCCI Secretary Jay Shah had recently dismissed reports claiming that unofficial discussions were held with Ponting regarding the coaching position during the IPL 2023.

“Neither I nor the BCCI have approached any former Australian cricketer with a coaching offer,” Shah said in a statement. “The information circulating in some sections of the media is completely false.”

“Finding the right coach for our national team is a meticulous and painstaking process. We are focused on identifying individuals who have a deep understanding of the structure of Indian cricket and have progressed through the ranks,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, Ganguly believes that Rohit Sharma-led India have a good chance of winning their second T20 World Cup trophy.

“India has a very good chance in the World Cup. India will have to play like a T20 team. There’s a lot of talent,” he said.

India will face Bangladesh in a warm-up match on Saturday and begin their campaign against Ireland on June 5.

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