Gautam Gambhir questioned Virat Kohli’s decision to step down as captain of the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) after the 2021 IPL. In a video shared on the franchise’s social media accounts, Kohli revealed he would give up the RCB skipper spot.
The 2021 IPL resumed in the UAE on Sunday after being postponed in May due to the COVID-19 outbreak in India. Kohli’s captaincy relinquishment stole the show during the clash between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings.
Virat Kohli to step down from RCB captaincy after #IPL2021
“This will be my last IPL as captain of RCB. I’ll continue to be an RCB player till I play my last IPL game. I thank all the RCB fans for believing in me and supporting me.”: Virat Kohli#PlayBold #WeAreChallengers pic.twitter.com/QSIdCT8QQM
— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) September 19, 2021
Virat Kohli’s timing of the announcement was questioned by Gautam Gambhir. He believed it could distract RCB players and result in more pressure, putting their chances of winning their first title at risk.
It makes sense (the timing of the decision surprises me). Probably after the tournament. That would make the team uneasy and emotional, it would make them push harder. Especially in the situation RCB is in, you don’t want to do that.” Gambhir said to Star Sports.
It’s not about winning for individuals, it’s about winning for the franchise. “He could have done it after the tournament, too,” he replied.
Kohli, who took over the RCB captaincy in 2013, has failed to impress despite a successful batting career. In the first phase, the Royal Challengers, currently ranked third in the points table, won their first four matches. Against the Kolkata Knight Riders, they will begin their IPL campaign on Monday.
Klohi has taken a brave decision, but it will be an emotional moment for Gautam Gambhir.
Gautam Gambhir praised Kohli’s brave decision, but admitted that it would be emotional until the end. The former KKR captain hopes the players do not get carried away and focus on the task at hand. According to him:
He has taken a courageous decision but it’s going to be an emotional moment. It will never be easy for him. I hope the players and the franchise don’t get emotional and continue to play as they were this season.”
Prior to the UAE leg of the IPL began, Virat Kohli announced he would step down as India’s T20I captain after the next World Cup. Hence, it is a highly opportune time for the prolific batsman to leave as captain by gifting both his franchise and his country a trophy.