"...He Tends To Quit": Sanjay Manjrekar On Virat Kohli Stepping Down India Test Captain
Sanjay Manjrekar said that Virat Kohli "wants to make himself unsackable as captain" and "when he gets that vibe that his captaincy is under threat, he tends to quit".
Virat Kohli on Saturday brought an end to a seven-year stint as the Test captain of the Indian cricket team after he announced that he was stepping down from the role. Last year in September, Kohli had quit as captain of the India T20I team, following which he was replaced as ODI captain of the team by the board. He had earlier also stepped as captain Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). Reacting to the same, former India batter Sanjay Manjrekar said that Kohli "wants to make himself unsackable as captain" and "when he gets that vibe that his captaincy is under threat, he tends to quit".
"I think, in some way, he wants to make himself unsackable as captain. When he gets that vibe that his captaincy is under threat, he tends to quit," Manjrekar said during an interaction on ESPNCricinfo.
"It's come one after the other in a very short span - giving up captaincy at RCB and then the white-ball captaincy as well. This also was unexpected, but it is interesting that all these three resignations of important positions have come so quickly one after the other," he added.
Manjrekar further highlighted that the change in management has also played a major role. He feels that the Kohli won't get the same backing from current head coach Rahul Dravid like the way he used to get under former coach Ravi Shastri.
"He was uncomfortable when Anil Kumble was the coach and once Shastri and the support staff came in, he felt comfortable and was able to enjoy his captaincy. The new coach (Rahul Dravid) is no Ravi Shastri. He would have got some inkling of the kind of support he was going to get from him," he stated.
Manjrekar also pointed out that Kohli has found himself out of his comfort zone.
"Clearly, a guy who finds himself outside his comfort zone. Individually, his batting is not at its best. All that has just added up. He is not in a great space at the moment. These are all emotional decisions that one can understand.
Notably, Kohli's Test captaincy announcement came a day after India lost the three-match Test series in South Africa.