Former India opener Gautam Gambhir has been signed up with the newly inducted Lucknow franchise of the Indian Premier League (IPL) as their mentor ahead of the 2022 season.
Gambhir’s appointment comes a day after Andy Flower was appointed as the head coach of the Lucknow team, which is owned by the Sanjiv Goenka-owned RPSG Group.
In the recently held auctions, RPSG Group, which previously ran the Rising Pune Supergiant (RPSG) team in 2016 and 2017 season of the cash-rich league, had bought the rights of Lucknow franchise for a whopping Rs 7,090 crore.
Welcoming the two-time IPL winning captain, Goenka said: “Gautam has an impeccable career record. I respect his cricketing mind and look forward to working with him.”
On the other hand, Gambhir also confirmed his association with the Lucknow team and tweeted: “It’s a privilege to be in the contest again. Thanks Dr. Goenka for incl me in #LucknowIPLTeam as its mentor. The fire to win still burns bright inside me, the desire to leave a winner’s legacy still kicks me. I won’t be contesting for a dressing room but for the spirit & soul of UP.”
Notably, Gambhir, 40, played 58 Tests, 147 ODIs and 37 T20Is for India and was also a member of the 2007 Men’s T20 World Cup and 2011 Men’s Cricket World Cup-winning teams.
It was under Gambhir’s captaincy when KKR had lifted the trophy twice in 2012 and 2014.
Earlier, Flower, the former England head coach, who is also a former captain of Zimbabwe, was signed by the new Lucknow franchise as their head coach. Considered as Zimbabwe’s greatest ever player, Flower was part of the Punjab Kings (PBKS) coaching staff in the 2020 and 2021 seasons.
After his appointment, Flower had said: “I am incredibly excited to be joining the new Lucknow franchise and I am very grateful for the opportunity. The passion for cricket in India is unrivalled and it is a real privilege to lead an IPL franchise and I am looking forward to working closely with Dr Goenka and the Lucknow team.”
“As a player and a coach, Andy has left an indelible mark in the history of cricket. We respect his professionalism and hope he will work with out vision and add value to our team,” said Sanjiv Goenka, chairman of the RPSG Group which owns the Lucknow franchise.