Sunil Gavaskar, one of cricket’s all-time greats, has revealed why he never considered being the Indian cricket team’s head coach. He believes he is not a good ‘ball by ball’ viewer, which is an important coaching trait.
Gavaskar said, “I’ve been a terrible watcher of cricket, even when I was playing the game. If I got out, I would be watching the match very intermittently. I would watch for a while, then go inside the change room or read something or reply to letters etc. and then come out and watch again. So, I wasn’t the ball-by-ball watcher, like say GR Vishwanath is. GRV or my uncle Madhav Mantri was a complete ball by ball watcher. And if you want to be a coach or a selector, you’ve got to be a ball-by-ball watcher. And therefore, I never even thought about it being a coach.”
Sunil Gavaskar is notable for becoming the first Indian batsman to reach 10,000 runs in Test cricket. Gavaskar had previously came closest to coaching the India squad while working as a consultant during Australia’s visit of India in 2004. Since then, he has avoided management positions with BCCI. Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, and Sourav Ganguly have all sought his advice in the past, according to the cricketer-turned-commentator Gavaskar.
“I’ve been very happy to exchange notes with them [Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly] whatever my observations are. So yes, I’ve been able to maybe help them somewhere down the line, but on a full-time basis, that’s not something I could do”, he said.
Gavaskar is presently quarantined in Europe in preparation for his role as a commentator for the ICC World T20 Final between India and New Zealand, which begins on June 18 in Southampton. However, despite his statement, Sunil Gavaskar has been commentating for Indian cricket for more than two decades, and his job entails observing every ball till he is in the commentary box, which is changed every 30 minutes (average).