India captain Virat Kohli on Thursday responded to former coach Anil Kumble’s observations about why he quit the post of head coach and said that while the players respect him, the sanctity of the dressing room needs to be maintained. The Indian skipper said that the happenings of the team dressing room is sacred and private. "Anil bhai has expressed his views and he has taken a decision to step out and we all respect that decision. It's something that has happened right after the tournament," Kohli said from Trinidad in the pre-match press conference.
"One thing for sure is that I have had 11 press conferences that have happened during the Champions Trophy. We have created a culture over the last 3-4 years that whatever happens in the change room, we have tried to maintain the sanctity of the change room throughout. That is what the whole team believes in. For us that is paramount," he further added.
"Like I said, for me what's most important is to maintain the sanctity of the dressing-room and what happens in the change-room is something that's very sacred and private to all of us.
"... And something that I would not express in details in a public scenario. As I said, his point of view is out there and we respect that decision."
Kumble resigned after the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) decided to not renew his one-year contract and invited fresh applications for the top post. While the board had extended his contract till the end of the West Indies series, beginning on Friday, Kumble pulled out after the team had left for the Caribbean and tweeted his reasons for resigning.
Kumble, who was appointed as the head coach last year, has had a good run. Under his guidance, India won 10 out of the 13 home Tests with two draws and a single defeat. India also won a Test series comprehensively in the West Indies.
Kumble's contract as the head coach of the Indian team ended on Tuesday after the ICC Champions Trophy and he was not interested in an extension. Hours after resigning, the former India captain put out a statement on Twitter and wrote, "the captain had reservations with my 'style'... In light of these 'reservations' I believe it is best I hand over this responsibility to whomever the CAC and BCCI deem fit."
Sources had earlier told NDTV that skipper Kohli was "not ready to budge", from his position on Kumble and that "coach-captain relationship was 'irreparable'."
The situation had snowballed just prior to the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 with the BCCI issuing a press release, asking for applications for the post of head coach for the Indian men's cricket team
India face the West Indies in the first of the five ODIs on Friday. But the start of the series has been overshadowed by Kumble's resignation and the reasons he gave for the decision.