No need to change Virat Kohli with Rohit Sharma as limited-overs captain, opines VVS Laxman

Written by Abhishek Patil

There has been a lot of talk and discussion regarding Team India’s limited-overs captaincy. While the current skipper Virat Kohli hasn’t fared poorly, his deputy Rohit Sharma has managed to keep the former on his toes courtesy his heroics as an IPL captain. In addition, Kohli’s usage of his bowlers and constant chopping and changing has led to his severe criticism. To top it all, Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are yet to win an IPL title.

However, when VVS Laxman was asked to share his take on Kohli vs Rohit captaincy debate, the former Test specialist said, “No doubt he (Rohit) is a wonderful captain. Whenever he led in Virat’s absence he has been successful. Leading a franchise to five titles is not easy. The way he has built the team (Mumbai Indians) and handles tough situations has been superb. He has all the qualities to be a successful captain for India but you don’t have to necessarily look for a change. Virat has had phenomenal success and is doing a fantastic job. I don’t see any requirement to make a change,” said Laxman at the virtual launch of ‘The Hitman: The Rohit Sharma Story’, written by Vijay Lokapally and G Krishnan

Further, Laxman also compared Rohit’s Test career with his own, where he amassed 8,781 runs with 56 half-centuries and 17 tons. “His career reminded me of my career, asked to shift in the batting order. Not easy to open against quality fast bowlers without having opened earlier. He can put pressure on the bowlers once he gets his eye in,” he said.

“But he has been bogged by injuries. He is talented enough to succeed as a Test match player. The first time I saw him was in 2005 in the KSCA tournament. He had a lot of time against the fast bowlers but struggled against the spinners. A year later I saw him so improved and he was clearing the boundary with such ease at No. 6, changing the momentum of the game. I knew he had the ability to do something special. We struggle to get a double hundred in Test cricket and he has done it three times in One-day cricket,” Laxman concluded.

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Abhishek Patil