"When I got to the middle, Ganguly was not there. Dravid was in his blazer, ready for the toss," Gilchrist wrote in his autobiography 'True colours'.
"'Where's Sourav?, I said'. Rahul couldn't answer definitively; between the lines I perceived that Sourav might have pulled out from fear of losing a home series," said Gilchrist, who was a stand-by skipper in place of an injured Ricky Ponting.
Gilchrist felt the hard green top in Nagpur could be the reason for off-spinner Harbhajan making himself unavailable for the match.
"Harbhajan was out of Nagpur Test with a 'flu', which he seemed to have contracted when he saw the grassy wicket.
"...I still don't know to this day what was wrong with Ganguly and Harbhajan," said Gilchrist.
One of the most successful wicket-keepers ever, Gilchrist, who is also known for his sportsman spirit, mentioned that speculation was rife that the hard green top was a result of Ganguly's quarrel with the head of local Vidarbha Cricket Association.
"There was speculation that Sourav Ganguly was quarrelling with the head of cricket in Nagpur and a rumour that a spicy pitch might be prepared out of spite or revenge against the captain," he said.