BCCI in serious talks with Gautam Gambhir as India coach role

The Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) have long been one of the most successful franchises in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Over the years, their coaching and mentoring staff have not only driven the team to numerous victories but have also become highly sought after by international cricket boards. This trend raises intriguing questions about the KKR’s knack for identifying and nurturing coaching talent. In this article, we delve into the history and facts surrounding KKR’s influential coaches and mentors who have been poached by international cricket organizations.

Trevor Bayliss: The Architect of Success

Trevor Bayliss, the renowned Australian coach, played a pivotal role in KKR’s success, guiding the team to two IPL titles in 2012 and 2014. His strategic acumen and ability to get the best out of players were instrumental in these victories. During his tenure, Bayliss was negotiating for an extension with KKR when he received an irresistible offer from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).

Initially hesitant, Bayliss was approached by ECB’s Director of Cricket, Andrew Strauss, who made a second, more compelling offer. “The offer was too good to resist, and Bayliss accepted it,” said a source familiar with the events. This move marked the beginning of Bayliss’ successful stint with the England team, culminating in their historic 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup win.

Matthew Mott: From Assistant to Head Coach

Matthew Mott, once an assistant coach at KKR, has also made significant strides in his coaching career. The ECB appointed Mott as the head coach of their white-ball team, highlighting his growing reputation in the cricketing world. Mott’s journey from KKR to the helm of England’s white-ball side showcases the valuable experience and skills he gained during his time with the Knight Riders.

Mott’s leadership will be crucial as he guides Jos Buttler’s team in their title defense at the upcoming T20 World Cup. His progression from an assistant role at KKR to a head coach position at the ECB underscores the Knight Riders’ influence on international coaching careers.

Brendon McCullum: The Dynamic Leader

Brendon McCullum, another prominent figure associated with KKR, took over as the head coach of the Knight Riders in 2020. Under his guidance, KKR reached the IPL final in 2021, further cementing his reputation as a top-tier coach. The ECB, recognizing his potential, enticed McCullum to become the head coach of their red-ball team in 2022.

McCullum’s aggressive and innovative approach to coaching has been a breath of fresh air for the England Test team, instilling a new sense of confidence and dynamism. His transition from KKR to the ECB exemplifies the magnetic pull that KKR coaches seem to have on international cricket boards.

Gautam Gambhir: The Next Big Move?

The latest saga involves Gautam Gambhir, a former Indian cricketer and a key figure in KKR’s third IPL title triumph. Gambhir’s influence at KKR has been profound, and he is now considered a frontrunner to replace Rahul Dravid as the head coach of the Indian cricket team. This potential move is driven by a shared belief between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Gambhir himself that coaching India is a matter of national pride—”desh ke liye karna hai.”

Gambhir’s transition from a successful television expert and mentor at Lucknow Super Giants to potentially coaching the Indian national team involves significant considerations. The India job demands extensive travel, approximately 10 months a year, which is a major commitment for someone with a young family. Despite these challenges, the allure of coaching the national team, with its high profile, charm, and stature, is undeniably strong.

Nationalism and Coaching Philosophy

Gambhir is known for his fierce nationalism and no-nonsense approach. His passion for the country was evident even after his match-winning innings in the 2011 World Cup final. At a celebration hosted by President Pratibha Patil, Gambhir expressed his longing to serve in the army and protect the country. As a Member of Parliament, his public rhetoric has consistently reflected his patriotic fervor.

These qualities make Gambhir a compelling candidate for the India head coach role. His appointment would not only bring a fresh perspective but also resonate with the nationalistic sentiments that he embodies.

The Complexity of the India Coaching Role

The decision for Gambhir to take over as India’s head coach is not straightforward. Unlike his move from the Lucknow Super Giants to KKR, this role would require him to forgo other professional opportunities. The India job is a full-time commitment, precluding the possibility of engaging in multiple roles, which he currently enjoys.

Despite these constraints, the prestige and professional gratification of coaching the national team could outweigh the drawbacks. Gambhir’s ability to inspire and lead could be exactly what the Indian team needs to achieve sustained success on the global stage.

Negotiations and Speculations

As of the last application date, there has been no official confirmation of Gambhir’s appointment. However, sources close to the BCCI and high-profile commentators suggest that negotiations are ongoing. The BCCI’s top brass, including Jay Shah, is reportedly in discussions with Gambhir, exploring the possibility of his taking on this critical role.

A high-profile IPL franchise owner, close to the BCCI, hinted that Gambhir’s appointment is imminent, stating that an announcement will come soon. The delay in official confirmation suggests that final negotiations are still in progress, with both parties working out the finer details.


The KKR’s coaches and mentors have undeniably left a significant mark on international cricket, with several moving on to prestigious roles with national teams. Trevor Bayliss, Matthew Mott, and Brendon McCullum’s transitions highlight KKR’s role as a breeding ground for top coaching talent. Gautam Gambhir’s potential move to coach the Indian national team adds another fascinating chapter to this narrative.

The BCCI’s decision will be crucial for the future trajectory of Indian cricket. As we await the final announcement, it is clear that the legacy of KKR’s coaching influence continues to resonate across the cricketing world.

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