‘Virat is hit emotionally. His form has dipped further after losing captaincy’: Salman Butt

Written by Abhishek Patil

That Virat Kohli is struggling for runs, even more so in the IPL, has become a hot topic of discussion. Until last year, Kohli not getting centuries was the only point of concern, but this year, since giving up captaincy in all formats, Kohli’s form has dipped significantly. While many believed that letting go of captaincy would bring the best out of Kohli the batter and would see the India superstar get back to his free-flowing best, the 33-year-old has struggled to even score half-centuries in the last three months.

Weighing in on the issue, former Pakistan captain Salman Butt echoed Ravi Shastri’s opinion, saying that Kohli needs time off as he may still not be over his entire episode with BCCI that took place last year. Butt feels that the whole controversy with BCCI president Sourav Ganguly has taken a toll on Kohli and believes Virat’s form has deteriorated even further since losing India’s captaincy.

“He needs time off… and for India’s own betterment because they need him for the big events. He is a match-winner in his own rights. So probably he is too cooked at the moment. See, good or bad form is not a big thing for a player of his calibre but did you notice that his form has dipped significantly since losing captaincy in 2 formats. And he hasn’t had the most pleasant experience lately. The emotional aspect… whatever has happened to him in the last few months, Kohli has been hit emotionally,” Butt said on Cricket Baaz with Waheed Khan’s YouTube channel.

Kohli decided to step down as India captain after the T20 World Cup and was later removed from captaincy in ODIs. In January this year, after India lost the Test series in South Africa, Kohli decided that he would no longer continue as the captain in the format his leadership has excelled at.

“Just look at this… you are the best player in the world, has 70 centuries. Suddenly your form dips and batting deteriorate, your captaincy is taken away, you are being miscommunicated. A lot has happened. It’s a cluster of various things that has happened with him so probably some time off is best for him,” the former captain pointed out.

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Abhishek Patil