Delhi: BCCI president Sourav Ganguly Friday cleared air around all speculations regarding Virat Kohli’s decision to step down from T20 captaincy after the ongoing T20 World Cup in The UAE and Oman. Ganguly called it Kohli’s “own decision” and pointed out that there was absolutely no pressure from the cricket board to leave or resign. The 32-year-old Kohli had recently announced that he would only be available as a player in the shortest format (T20 cricket) after the ICC’s marquee event which is underway. Ganguly attributed Kohli’s call to the gruelling schedule that takes a toll on both mind and body.Also Read - LIVE India vs New Zealand Live Cricket Score 2nd Test, Day 1 Today Match Updates: Ajinkya Rahane, Ishant Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja Ruled Out Due to Injuries; Toss Delayed in Mumbai
“I was surprised. It was a decision perhaps he took after the England series, and it’s his decision. Neither did we speak to Virat nor did we put any pressure, we never pressurize anyone. I have been a player and I would never do such a thing,” Ganguly told India Today. Also Read - IND v NZ: VVS Laxman Gives Valuable Suggestion to Rahul Dravid, Virat Kohli; Reveals India's Best Playing XI
Ganguly, who is also himself counted amongst the most successful leaders in the sport, then explained the rationale behind Kohli’s decision. “There are more games now and it’s difficult to captain for such a long time across formats. I have myself been a captain (for five years).” Also Read - India vs New Zealand 2nd Test: Rain Threat Looms Over Test Match In Mumbai
“I was a captain for six years, it looks good from the outside, there is respect and all that. But you get burnt out on the inside and it happens to any captain. Not just to Tendulkar or Ganguly or Dhoni or Kohli but to the captain that will come up next as well. It is a tough job,” Ganguly added.
Ganguly also spoke about Kohli’s dip in form in international cricket by his own standards. The 49-year-old said that any great player, who has played for a long time, goes through this phase. Kohli has not registered even a single international hundred in last two years,
“It will happen (bad patch). A player who has played for long time, Virat in fact has played for 11 years (13 actually), every season won’t be the same. Virat is a human and not a machine. It’s not that you put him in a machine and runs will flow, he is human, who would nick a few, footwork will be iffy …”
“The graph was up and then it came down and it will again go up and you will see the vintage Virat,” he explained.