Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh is expected to end his playing career and join the coaching staff of a major IPL franchise. The veteran was part of the Kolkata Knight Riders squad that made it to the finals of the 2021 IPL.
The 41-year-old was last seen in a playing capacity during the first leg of the 2021 IPL. The franchise fielded three spinners in their playing XI with a majority of their matches being played in the spin-friendly conditions of Chennai.
In the second leg, he was seen in the dugout and in the training sessions offering advice to the youngsters. The likes of Varun Chakravarthy and Venkatesh Iyer have credited Harbhajan Singh for their recent success in national colours. He was also integral in selection calls during team meetings with coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Eoin Morgan.
With the current IPL cycle ending, the spinner was not retained by the franchise. Given his age, it is highly unlikely that he will be roped in by any of the teams in the mega auction.
He has reportedly received a number of offers pertaining to a role as the support staff of the franchise. The veteran has played for three IPL teams in his career namely Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders.
“The role could be that of a consultant, mentor or part of the advisory group but the franchise with which he is talking are keen to use his vast experience. He will take active part in also helping the franchise decide on their auction picks,” an IPL source privy to the development told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
IPL franchises would be keen on bringing the experienced campaigner in their setup despite his inexperience when it comes to coaching, given the accolades he has achieved over the course of his career.
“Look, Harbhajan wanted to make a formal announcement of his retirement after the season is over. He has had extended talks with one of the franchises which has shown keen interest but he would like to talk about it only when the deal is formally inked,” the source added
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