File photo of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma© BCCI/Sportzpics
With the ICC World Test Championship final not far and Rohit Sharma‘s peak fitness not an absolute guarantee, former India head coach Ravi Shastri made an interesting ‘captaincy suggestion’. Shastri believes that if for some reason Rohit is not available to lead India, Virat Kohli should be given the team’s bat. In fact, Shastri felt the same should’ve happened in the rescheduled Birmingham Test where Jasprit Bumrah was given the team’s command in Rohit’s absence even though Kohli was a part of the team.
While the suggestion did send fans into a state of nostalgia, former India cricketer Harbhajan Singh isn’t fully in agreement with Shastri’s take on the matter.
“This will be like taking a huge step back (making Kohli a fill-in captain). If you keep moving back, how will you move forward? Not that Virat was a bad captain. Till the time he was in charge, Virat was brilliant. Look at this record – the Test wins at home and overseas – it speaks for itself. He’s delivered the results too. But I definitely believe that if Rohit is not playing or is injured or whatever be the reason, we should look at someone otherwise,” Harbhajan told Hindustan Times.
Harbhajan, however, doesn’t entirely mind the idea of seeing Kohli lead the team for a one-off match like the World Test Championship final. But if Rohit, for some reason, misses a match in a bilateral series, rolling back to Virat isn’t something that the Turbonator fancies.
“If it comes to the one-off match, then yes, Virat can take charge. But not otherwise. If it’s a big match like a WTC final, why not? But if you look at a 4-match series where Rohit is not available, then that is the time to invest in a new captain. But if you go back to Virat in a long series, that is not a step in the right direction. Firstly, Virat won’t do it, and even if he does , it will send an indication that we haven’t prepared the next captain.” he explained.
Topics mentioned in this article