Virat Kohli on Thursday confirmed he will step down as India’s T20I captain after the T20 World Cup in the UAE in October-November. The star batsman said he will continue to lead India in Tests and ODI cricket.
Virat Kohli said he took the decision after consulting head coach Ravi Shastri and his teammates, including Rohit Sharma. Kohli added that he conveyed the call to Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah.
Kohli cited workload management as the reason to give up T20I captaincy. It remains to be seen who will take over as India’s T20I captain after the World Cup but Rohit Sharma is the frontrunner to be his successor.
Virat Kohli has led India in 45 T20I internationals since taking over from MS Dhoni in 2017. He has a winning percentage of 64.44 with 29 victories and 14 defeats.
“I have been fortunate enough to not only represent India but also lead the Indian cricket team to my utmost capability. I thank everyone who has supported me in my journey as the captain of the Indian cricket team. I couldn’t have done without them – the boys, the support staff, the selection committee, my coaches and each and every Indian who played for us to win,” Virat Kohli said in a statement on social media.
India Today understands that Virat Kohli informed the BCCI top brass only 30 minutes before he made the announcement on social media.
Discussed decision with Ravi Shastri, Rohit Sharma: Virat Kohli
“Understanding workload is a very important thing and considering my immense workload over the last 8-9 years playing all 3 formats and captaining regularly for the last 5-6 years, I feel I need to give myself space to be fully ready to lead the Indian team in Test and ODI cricket.
“I have given everything to the team during my time as T20 captain and I will continue to do so for the T20 team as a batsman moving forward.
“Of course, arriving at this decision took a lot of time. After a lot of contemplation and discussion with my close people, Ravi Bhai and also Rohit, who has been an essential part of the leadership group, I have decided to step down as the T20 captain after this T20 World Cup in Dubai in October.
“I have also spoken to secretary Mr. Jay Shah and the president of the BCCI Mr Sourav Ganguly along with the selectors about the same. I will continue to serve Indian cricket and the Indian team to the best of my ability.”
India will begin their T20 World Cup campaign against Pakistan in Dubai on October 24. Kohli will lead Royal Challengers Bangalore in the remainder of IPL 2021, starting September 19.