Virat Kohli is sent off like a milk fly even before Gautam Gambhir’s completion; BCCI risks dressing room conflict

Virat Kohli Gautam Gambhir Jay Shah

In a recent development regarding India’s new head coach role, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) did not consult Virat Kohli before appointing Gambhir Gambhir as India’s new head coach. Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir are from the same state, Delhi, but the duo has not had a great camaraderie together, especially on the cricket field.

Both of them were involved in an ugly clash in an IPL match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders in 2013, where they had to be separated by another Delhi lad Rajat Bhatia, who was with KKR at the time. Since then, both of them are known to be rivals on and off the cricket field.

The matter even escalated in the IPL 2023 when both the legends were involved in a heated exchange after a match between Lucknow Super Giants and Royal Challengers Bangalore. After the match, Gautam Gambhir was seen moving aggressively towards Virat Kohli and both of them seemed to have exchanged a few words with each other.

While Kohli is believed to have exchanged words with Afghanistan and LSG player Naveen-ul-Haq during the match, Gautam Gambhir, LSG’s mentor at the time, was trying to defend his player’s actions.

Also read: ‘Gautam Gambhir told me a long time ago that Rohit Sharma will do it’: Gambhir’s childhood coach’s astonishing revelation

Virat Kohli was not consulted on the appointment of Gautam Gambhir as India’s head coach

According to Hindustan Times, the BCCI did not consult Virat Kohli before the appointment of Gautam Gambhir as the head coach of Team India. The Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), which was tasked with appointing India’s new head coach and which comprises former players like Ashok Malhotra, Jatin Paranjape and Sulakshana Naik, is believed to have unanimously accepted Gambhir’s name and recommended his name to the BCCI.

Gautam Gambhir and WV Raman were the only ones who turned up for the interview for the post of India’s head coach. On Tuesday (July 9), BCCI Secretary Jay Shah officially announced that Gautam Gambhir will be India’s next head coach and his tenure will begin from India’s white-ball tour of Sri Lanka.

The relationship between Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli took a turn in this year’s IPL when both were seen sharing a warm hug during a strategic break in the match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bengaluru. Gambhir was KKR’s mentor this season and played a key role in the team’s title win this year.

At an event during the IPL, Kohli even put an end to rumours of a possible rift between the two. He even mentioned that both of them are professionals and not kids who constantly fight with each other.

It’s important to look ahead, says BCCI official

A BCCI official said it was important for the board to look ahead as India is going through a transition period.

“There is enough time for both sides to discuss the issue but it was important for the BCCI to keep the bigger picture in mind as many youngsters are likely to be involved in the coming years,” a BCCI official told the Hindustan Times.

Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli recently retired from T20Is after India’s triumph at the 2024 T20 World Cup. Both star players will not be available for Gambhir’s first assignment as India’s head coach in Sri Lanka. But they are likely to reunite during India’s home Test series against Bangladesh.