Virat Kohli drops a bombshell as he steps down as Test captain a day after India lose the series 1-2 in South Africa to end seven-year stint
The inevitable came a bit early as Virat Kohli on Saturday quit as India’s Test captain, saying he did his job with “absolute honesty” and time was right to quit the leadership role.
Kohli’s announcement came a day after India suffered an embarrassing Test series defeat against South Africa. Kohli was dealing with one controversy after another as he was recently removed as ODI captain by the BCCI after he decided to step down at Twenty20 captain.
His decision to quit as Test skipper has come at a time when his relation with the BCCI is so strained that he preferred to announce his decision on social media.
Kohli was appointed Test captain back in 2014 when MS Dhoni stepped down in the middle of the series against Australia.
“Every thing has to come to a halt at some stage and for me as Test captain of India, it’s now,” Kohli wrote in a statement which he posted on Twitter, taking everyone by surprise. “There have been many ups and also some downs along the journey but there has never been lack of effort or lack of belief.
“It’s been seven years of hard work, toil and relentless perseverance everyday to take the team in the right direction. I have done the job with absolute honesty and left nothing out there,” he wrote in his statement.
Kohli led India to the top of world rankings and during his tenure, the team recorded a memorable series win in Australia. He is the fourth-most successful captain in history of Test cricket (who have led in at least 20 Tests) in terms of Test wins.
Kohli has 40 wins in 68 Tests in which he led India. The 33-year-old said that perhaps he is now spent and no longer able to give 120 per cent to the job. “I have always believed in giving my 120 per cent in everything I do, and if I can’t do that, I know it’s not the right thing to do. I have absolute clarity in my heart and I cannot be dishonest to my team.
“I want to thank the BCCI for giving me the opportunity to lead my country for such a long period of time and more importantly to all the teammates who bought into the vision, I had for the team from Day One and never gave up in any situation,” he said.
‘Thank you Ravi bhai, MSD’
He didn’t forget to thank Ravi Shastri and MS Dhoni for their contribution. “You guys have made this journey so memorable and beautiful. To Ravi bhai and the support group who were the engine behind this vehicle that moved us upwards in Test cricket consistently, you all have played a massive role in bringing this vision to life.” “Lastly, a big thank you to MS Dhoni who believed in me as a captain,” he signed off.
No. of Test wins under Virat Kohli, which makes him India’s finest captain by a distance. MS Dhoni led the country to 27 wins from 60 matches while Sourav Ganguly had 21 wins out of 49
Ravi Shastri@RaviShastriOfc: Virat, you can go with your head held high. Few have achieved what you have as captain. Definitely India’s most aggressive and successful. Sad day for me personally as this is the team Flag of India we built together
Wasim Jaffer@WasimJaffer14: When Virat took over as Test captain, India winning a test overseas was an achievement, now if India lose an overseas test series it is an upset. And that’s how far he has taken Indian cricket forward, and that will be his legacy. Congratulations on successful reign @imVkohli
Ishant Sharma@ImIshant: Thank you for all the memories I’ve shared with you in dressing room & on & off the field since childhood, where we never thought that you would be our captain & I’ll play 100 test matches for India. All we did was just play cricket with all our heart & things worked out well. I still remember back 2017 in South Africa, where u told me its high time to win series in these countries. Yes, we didn’t win 2017-18 series in Africa, but we went to Australia & beat them in Australia. In England 2017-18 series we lost, but we know as team how close we came!
Irfan Pathan@IrfanPathan: Whenever the talk of Indian cricket captains will arise in test cricket @imVkohli ‘s name will be up there,not only for results but the kind of impact he had as a captain. Thank you #ViratKohli
Sir Vivian Richards@ivivianrichards: Congratulations @imVkohli on a stunning run as the Indian captain. You can be very proud of what you have achieved so far, and for sure, your name will be up there among the best leaders in world cricket
Yuvraj Singh@YUVSTRONG12: It’s been a remarkable journey King Kohli @imVkohli! Very few have been able to achieve what you have. Gave your all and played like a true champion each time. May you grow from strength to strength! Onwards and upwards
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