Virat Kohli would often let MS Dhoni handle little details in early days of captaincy, reveals Bharat Arun

Written by Toshi Pawar

Team India captain Virat Kohli was happy to take the back seat to allow his predecessor MS Dhoni to handle the ‘little details’ in early days of his captaincy especially in limited-overs cricket. Former India bowling coach Bharat Arun revealed this during an interview adding that it was head coach Ravi Shastri who explained to Kohli the importance of having Dhoni around.

Chennai Super Kings skipper Dhoni, who won the IPL 2021 title this year, was brought in as a Team Mentor for the T20 World Cup 2021 last month but failed to lift the Indian side into the semifinal stage.

“Ravi told the importance of having a senior member like Dhoni in the team. It was about giving a lot of respect and he would definitely help him. Kohli understood that of course and it was a seamless transition. You could see the respect in the way Kohli would often let Dhoni handle little details and prowl on the boundary in ODIs. That kind of stuff can’t have happened without trust and respect. And Dhoni also saw he was given the space and responded so well,” Arun said in an exclusive interview to Indian Express newspaper.

Arun spoke about the ‘seamless’ transition that took place when Kohli took over as captain with Dhoni still in the side. Asked what Shastri brought to the Indian team, Arun said, “Fearlessness and honesty. During his tenure, there was absolutely no agenda. The decisions might have been right or wrong, that is irrelevant, but they came from the right place, purely thinking about team values and what we stood for as a team. Honesty encompasses criticism, self-introspection. It was in telling the team that ‘accept that we messed up’. It helped us evolve the team.”

India is currently hosting New Zealand at home where the new look Rohit Sharma-led side blanked the tourists in the three-match T20Is. On the alleged rift between Kohli and new T20 captain Rohit Sharma, Arun said, “There was a storm that was built up from outside the team. These two have a lot of healthy respect for each other and there has been a constant dialogue going on. For us to do well, a team needs to be in good harmony to achieve. And it was.”

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Toshi Pawar

Girl who loves blogging, fashion, photography. Digital Strategist for @CricketAge and SEO, Social Media Expert at Mr.HiTech.