The Yorkshire first team coach would be a fancied contender should England opt to sack Peter Moores after their humiliating exit from the World Cup.
England crashed out of the competition yesterday after a dismal 15-run defeat to Bangladesh left them unable to reach the quarter-finals.
It has left Moores’s position as head coach vulnerable and heightened speculation that Gillespie – who led Yorkshire to the County Championship title last summer – could be head-hunted to replace him.
Colin Graves, the outgoing Yorkshire chairman and the incoming chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, is a great admirer of the ex-Australia fast bowler, having appointed him in 2011 during a major coaching reshuffle that he may be tempted to replicate at international level.
Gillespie, who turns 40 next month, has helped revolutionise Yorkshire’s fortunes since that time and has also stated his desire to one day become an international coach.
Although he would doubtless be tempted by any offer from England, with Moores’s position up-in-the-air after a weak, powder-puff showing at the World Cup, it is by no means cut-and-dried that Gillespie would accept as he has a young family who are settled in Leeds and a job at Yorkshire he enjoys immensely.
Gillespie feels he is part of something special at Headingley – where Graves has set the clear challenge of dominating county cricket for the next decade – and is keen to build on last summer’s Championship triumph.
“I am flattered that people link my name (to England) but I’m fully committed to Yorkshire,” said Gillespie.
“The county has given me a great opportunity and I want to repay that faith. I really enjoy my job, my family’s very settled and I feel that we’ve still got a lot of work to do at the club going forward.
“We’ve done well in the County Championship and managed to win that trophy, but we’ve underachieved in the shorter forms and I’d like to be a part of that process to help us try to get that Holy Grail of winning one-day trophies,” he said.
Gillespie, who travels with Yorkshire to Abu Dhabi on Thursday for a two-week pre-season tour that incorporates the prestigious Champion County game against MCC, said his family are his top priority.
And with Yorkshire having given him permission recently to seek winter coaching opportunities in Australia’s Big Bash League, which would enable him to broaden his experience without prolonged periods away from home in Leeds, it could be that he already feels he has the ideal work-family balance.
“International coaching is certainly something I’d look at down the track but what you’ve got to remember is that I’ve got a very young family,” he said.
“My kids are nine, seven, four and two. That would be a really big ask to go away for basically nine-10 months a year with an international job.
“I would find that really difficult, I would find that a challenge.”
Whether England bring down the curtain on Moores’s second spell remains to be seen but both Yorkshire’s director of cricket Martyn Moxon and captain Andrew Gale are sanguine about the possibility of Gillespie being courted by covetous eyes.
Moxon, who believes England would be unlikely to change tack now ahead of a major Ashes summer, said it was only natural that his highly-regarded colleague was attracting attention.
“I’m not surprised that Dizzy’s been linked,” he said. “Clearly, in the three years he’s been with us, we’ve had success. He’s one of the top coaches in the country and I’m sure will become one of the top coaches in the world in time. It’s no surprise that this speculation is going on.
“As far as ‘Mooresey’ is concerned, clearly there’s been a massive underperformance in the World Cup and only the guys out there will know why that is.
“But I can’t realistically see anything happening until the end of this summer, if it happens at all, and we knew that the England one-day squad is in transition.
“They should have performed better than they have, but it is in transition and a lot of soul-searching and decisions have to be made about the one-day team going forward. But I like ‘Mooresey’, we had a successful summer in Test cricket under his leadership and I want him and England to do well.”
Gale commented: “What I know about Dizzy is that he’s really settled where he is. His kids are settled in school, he did 12 years or whatever it was in international cricket, going from country to country, and I’m not sure, at this moment in time, he’d want to go back to that.
“He’s really enjoying his job with Yorkshire and I’d like to think he’s got unfinished business.”