Surprised Ricky Ponting Recalls Chat With Virat Kohli During First Phase of IPL 2021, Says Spoke About Continuing As Test Captain
Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting said that initially he was shocked to hear Virat Kohli giving up Test captaincy but as he went back in time and recalled his own stint as captain of Australia, the decision made a lot of sense.
New Delhi: Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting was left surprised by Virat Kohli when he decided to step down as the captain of the Indian Test team after the series loss against South Africa in January 2022. While Ponting was expecting him to give up white-ball captaincy as per their conversation during the first phase of the IPL 2021, the former India captain had shown his interest to carry on as the Test captain for India.
“Yes, it did actually (surprise me). Probably the main reason why is, I had a chat and good catch-up with Virat during the first part of the IPL (2021) before it got postponed,” said Ponting in the first episode of The ICC Review joined Isa Guha.
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“He was talking then about stepping away (from captaincy) from white-ball cricket and how passionate he was to continue on to be Test match captain. He just loved and cherished that job and that post so much. Obviously, the Indian Test team had achieved a lot under his leadership. When I heard it, I was really, really surprised,” he said.
Ponting was always impressed with the way Kohli had gone about his business.
“You only have to watch him on the field for an hour of the day’s play to realise how passionate he is about that job and the role, and how much he wants the team to win and how much he wants the best for Indian cricket,” added the former Australia coach.
While he was shocked when he heard about Kohli stepping down, Ponting went back in time and recalled his stint as captain with Australia and all of sudden much of it started to make sense.
“I was shocked, but then I started thinking about other things, even my own time as captain. I have gone on record and said that I probably think I played a couple of years longer than I should have in hindsight. I think I might have been captain for a couple of years longer than I should have,” added the 47-year-old.
“So I think there is potentially a shelf-life for international cricket captains and even coaches. Virat’s been there for close to seven years now. If there’s a country in the world that’s the most difficult to captain, it’s probably India because of just how popular the game is and how much every single Indian loves to see the fortunes of the Indian cricket team, whether they are good or bad. You weigh all those things up,” he further went on to add.
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