"I doubt if..." - Harbhajan Singh shares no-nonsense verdict on Gautam Gambhir potentially becoming India head coach

Updated - 28 May 2024, 04:41 PM

Gautam Gambhir and Harbhajan Singh
Gautam Gambhir and Harbhajan Singh. Image Credit: Instagram

As the deadline to apply for the role of head coach of the Indian cricket team ended on May 27, former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh shared his strong opinion on the rumors of Gautam Gambhir potentially taking the high-profile and most demanding job.

There are reports that Gambhir is the frontrunner to replace Rahul Dravid as India’s next coach and even some reports claim that Ashish Nehra, VVS Laxman, and Harbhajan are in contention for the top role. However, the former World Cup winner called these reports just rumors.

Harbhajan Singh addresses rumors of Gautam Gambhir as India’s next head coach

He mentioned that even his own name had been mentioned in similar contexts for Team India’s head coach job, despite the fact that he was not involved in any formal coaching setup and had not applied for the job. However, there is no clarity as to whether Gambhir applied for the role, and BCCI also kept tight lips on the names of the applicants.

Harbhajan Singh was quoted as saying by PTI: “I doubt if that is the case with Gautam; I am not aware if he has applied for India’s head coach job or not. If I say it properly, it is speculation, which is doing rounds. My name is doing rounds, and I wasn't even a part of any kind of system of coaching.”

He highlighted the importance of the head coach's role, describing it as a significant responsibility rather than merely an opportunity. He mentioned that the primary task of India would be to bring unity within the team, ensuring that all players work as a team towards common goals.

It is a very, very big responsibility: Harbhajan Singh 

The commentator added, “Whoever gets the opportunity, I would rather say responsibility, a big, big responsibility, and if Gautam gets it, it should be in a way to do it so that the team plays together. The biggest thing a coach can do is bring everyone together so that the team plays together.”

Reflecting on the ongoing speculation, Harbhajan stressed that even if Gambhir takes over as Team India’s next head coach, his main goal should be to bring everyone together in the team, and it should be paramount for any coach, whether it be KKR mentor Ashish Nehra or another candidate.

He expressed that his own approach, if ever given the chance to coach, would focus on uniting the players and building a strong, collaborative team spirit. Harbhajan also hopes that whoever gets the job will do a better job than the past coaches for the Indian cricket team.

Harbhajan signed off by saying, “So, whether Gautam becomes coach or Ashish Nehra, or whosoever, if I am given the job, of which I am not sure if my name would pop up, my job would be to bring everyone together; whoever gets the opportunity, I hope they do better than what others before them did.”

Notably, Gambhir recently guided KKR to the IPL 2024 title triumph in Chennai, and his close bond with team co-owner Shah Rukh Khan will play a major role in decision-making even if he had applied for India’s head coach role. 

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Harbhajan Singh Gautam Gambhir India National Cricket Team