New Delhi: The just-retired Gautam Gambhir categorically rejected rumours around his joining politics but the former India opener indicated he was open to coaching at the big stage.
The 37-year-old World Cup winner walked into the sunset by scoring a memorable 100 in his farewell Ranji Trophy match against Andhra at the Feroz Shah Kotla ground here.
“Not at all,” Gambhir said when asked if he was contesting in the next general elections. “There are rumours, which I have heard as well, probably the reason is maybe I take up social issues as well… For me Twitter was always a platform which is very, very important and where I take up social issues. I am not that kind of a character where I am going to start joking on a platform like Twitter as well. For me, being a citizen of this country, it is my right to take up social issues and that probably is the reason why people think I am going to join politics but there is nothing of that sort.”
Gambhir last played for the country in 2016 against England in Rajkot. “As I just mentioned, I haven’t even thought about it (politics) and it is a completely different field. For 25 I have not done anything else, so let’s see what I am going to do.”
Gambhir scored 4,154 runs in Test cricket from 58 matches, 5,238 runs in ODIs and 932 in T20Is. He was also asked if he is keen on taking up coaching assignments in competitive cricket, and he sounded positive.
“One thing which excites me is action and I am sure action is not about sitting in those AC rooms doing commentary and stuff. I don’t know if I am going to be as good a coach as I have been a player,” Gambhir said.
“I will have to evaluate whether I can be successful as a coach. Let’s see, if that comes around and if I feel that I have the energy, passion and if I have the commitment to do it, I will think about it.”
He responded in the negative when asked if he will enter cricket administration at some point. “I am too straightforward a person to be in administration, I don’t think people will accept me anywhere,” said Gambhir, who has distributed all his bats to his team-mates, leaving his ‘kit bag empty’.
Gambhir said he is willing to help young players in Delhi cricket. “I am still a government nominee, hopefully, I can now try and contribute more (since he is no longer a player). There won’t be any conflict of interest, which is very important and there won’t be any criticism as well because when I took this up there was a lot of criticism. The boys need a lot of good things in DDCA (Delhi District and Cricket Association) and hopefully I am able to put that word across the executive committee and get those things done from the cricket point of view. Apart from that, my job is to get the best out of the boys.”