Sourav Ganguly reveals Ian Chappell had doubts over Greg's appointment as Team India coach

On Greg's appointment, Ganguly says that when there was discussion in 2004 on who could succeed John Wright as the coach, Chappell's name flashed in his mind first.

PTI, February 26, 2018

New Delhi: Even brother Ian Chappell was not very positive about Greg Chappell taking over as Team India coach in 2005 and so was Sunil Gavaskar, but Sourav Ganguly says he decided to ignore all these warnings and follow his instincts on the appointment.

File image of Sourav Ganguly. AFP

File image of Sourav Ganguly. AFP

In fact, Ganguly was in awe of Chappell prior to his appointment and even embarked on a secret trip to Australia in 2003 before the team was to tour that country for doing an exhaustive recce of the grounds and preparing himself and his teammates.

He got in touch with Chappell as he thought he "would be the best person" to help him in his mission.

"In our previous meetings he had impressed me with his deep cricketing knowledge," Ganguly writes in his autobiography "A Century is Not Enough".

But little did Ganguly know then that this association was going to be one of the most controversial of that era.

On Greg's appointment, the former Team India skipper says that when there was discussion in 2004 on who could succeed John Wright as the coach, Chappell's name flashed in his mind first.

"I thought Greg Chappell would be the best person to take us to the number one slot from the challenger's position. I had conveyed my personal choice to Mr (Jagmohan) Dalmiya when they were looking for a new Indian coach," the book, co-authored by Gautam Bhattacharya and published by Juggernaut, says.

"A few people advised me against this move. Sunil Gavaskar was one of them. 'Sourav, think about it. With him around you might have problems in running the team. His past coaching record is not spectacular, he told me," writes Ganguly.

He says Dalmiya also called one morning and asked him to come to his house for an urgent discussion.

"He shared in confidence that even his brother Ian thought Greg might not be the right choice for India. Well, I decided to ignore all these warnings and follow my instincts," Ganguly writes.

"The rest as they say is history. But then that's life. Some scripts go your way, like my tour of Australia, and some don't, like the Greg chapter.

I conquered the country but not one of its citizens," he says.

He says suddenly from 'Maharaj' he joined the ranks of the oppressed.

"This (the year 2005) remains the most turbulent chapter of my life. Not only was my captaincy suddenly taken away for no reason but I was also dropped as a player. I feel angry even as I write this. What happened was unthinkable. Unacceptable. Unforgivable," he writes.

"History hasn't recorded many instances of a winning captain being dropped so unceremoniously, that too after scoring a hundred in the last Test series. In Indian cricket there are no such parallels and I doubt whether there will ever be. So Mr Gregory Stephen Chappell and the selection committee led by Kiran More have indeed put me in august company," he rues.

Updated Date: Feb 26, 2018

Top Stories

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4397 116
2 South Africa 3712 106
3 England 4722 105
4 New Zealand 2354 102
5 Australia 3663 102
6 Sri Lanka 3668 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6918 126
2 India 7000 121
3 New Zealand 4803 112
4 South Africa 4985 111
5 Pakistan 4370 102
6 Australia 3980 100
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 4979 138
2 India 5064 127
3 Australia 2953 118
4 England 2586 118
5 New Zealand 2803 112
6 South Africa 2334 111