Shastri-Kohli partnership ends, big hint on Team India’s next T20I captain

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New Delhi: India hammered Namibia by nine wickets to give Virat Kohli a winning farewell in his last match as T20I captain and finish their disappointing T20 World Cup campaign on a high Monday.

It was Kohli’s last match as India’s T20I captain and Shastri, Arun’s last day as India’s coaching staff members. The hug therefore was anything but the ones they exchange after all other Indian victories.

As India’s final encounter got over and both teams shook hands, it was one final goodbye from Shastri – the man who was this team’s backbone over the last four years. “What I want to do is give every player a chance. Then it’s also up to them to see what they make of it,” he had said in his initial months as coach after taking over for the second time in 2017. In doing so, he’s leaving behind a vast pool, one that Rahul Dravid will look to fine-tune going forward.

Team India’s Virat Kohli on Monday hinted at the side’s next T20I skipper during the toss in his last match as the captain in the shortest format of the game. Kohli had announced ahead of the tournament that he would be stepping down from the leadership role in T20Is.

While Kohli didn’t name the next T20I captain explicitly, the 33-year-old said that Rohit Sharma — the current vice-captain — has been “overlooking” the side for some time.

“It’s been an honour for me, I was given the opportunity and I tried to do my best. But it’s also time to create some space and move forward. I’ve been immensely proud of how the team has played. Now I think it’s time for the next lot to stake this team forward. Obviously Rohit is here and he’s overlooking things for a while now,” Kohli said during the toss.

Rohit Sharma has been widely touted as Team India’s next skipper in the shortest format. While the opener is yet to have an extended run as an international captain, his record as skipper in T20Is is exemplary, having won 15 of the 19 games he led Team India in.


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