The Sourav Ganguly-Greg Chappell saga remains to be the most controversial stories of Indian cricket. Over the last decade, there have been many theories about what exactly happened between the two players. Now, Sourav Ganguly, in his autobiography ‘A Century is Not Enough’, has given a better insight into the incident. The former Indian skipper revealed that he was warned against appointing Greg Chappell as team India coach in 2005 by Ian Chappell and Sunil Gavaskar but Ganguly ignored these warnings and followed his instinct on the appointment.
Interestingly, Ganguly who was the captain of the Indian cricket team back then, had taken a trip to Australia before team India’s tour in 2003 for an exhaustive recce of the grounds and preparing himself and his teammates. It was then that Ganguly had got in touch with Chappell. The former Australian captain helped the Indian skipper with his batting. “In our previous meetings he had impressed me with his deep cricketing knowledge,” Ganguly wrote.
The tour turned out to be a fruitful one for Sourav Ganguly as team India as the four-match Test series ended at 1-1. So, when John Wright’s tenure as team Indian coach came to an end, Greg Chappell was the first name that came to Sourav Ganguly’s mind.
“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,” Ganguly said in this book co-authored by Gautam Bhattacharya.
Ganguly revealed that he was asked to think about this decision by Sunil Gavaskar. The former Indian opener had told Ganguly that he might have a tough time running the team with Chappell around.
Jagmohan Dalmiya who was the BCCI president back then had called Ganguly to his house one morning for an urgent discussion. Dalmiya, in confidence, told Ganguly that even Greg Chappell’s brother Ian thinks that the former might not be the right choice for India.
The southpaw accepted his mistake by saying that some scripts in life go your way, other’s don’t. “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 said.