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'Thank you for supporting Test cricket so passionately'

January 16, 2022 18:17 IST
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IMAGE: Virat Kohli ended his seven-year reign as India's most successful Test captain. Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

Spin legend Shane Warne has thanked star batter Virat Kohli for "passionately supporting" Test cricket, a day after he stepped down as skipper of the Indian Test team.

Kohli on Saturday ended his seven-year reign as India's most successful Test captain, the move coming a day after an unexpected 1-2 series loss to South Africa.


Under Kohli, India won 40 out of 68 Tests, a record which made him one of the most successful Test captains in world cricket.

"Congrats @imVkohli on what you and your team has achieved under your leadership and thank you for supporting test cricket so passionately and insuring that it stays the number 1 form of the game," Warne tweeted.

Kohli has been the most successful Test captain India has ever produced. After taking over the reins from Mahendra Singh Dhoni, he led India in 68 Test matches and secured 40 victories at a win percentage of 58.82.

Last year, Warne was all praise for Kohli after his team beat England by 157 runs in the fourth Test at The Oval to take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the five-match series.

Warne had then called Kohli the biggest superstar in world cricket.

However, the Australian great was not too pleased with the Indian maestro after he let it rip on the stump mic following the DRS episode that gave Dean Elgar a lifeline during the third and final Test against South Africa in Cape Town.

"Look it is an interesting one, I am not sure that should be happening from a captain of an international team.

"But sometimes frustration overflows, you just get so frustrated and that's why I said I wonder if that has happened three or four times through the series, and that was like okay that is enough now we can't have it anymore," Warne had said.

‘Driven Indian cricket to greater heights’

IMAGE: Cheteshwar Pujara was all in praise for Virat Kohli. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

India batter Cheteshwar Pujara on Sunday congratulated Virat Kohli for an outstanding stint as Team India's Test captain. 

Kohli on Saturday stepped down as India's Test captain after leading the side for seven years. "Congrats @imVkohli, on a captaincy tenure you can truly be proud of! You have driven Indian cricket to greater heights, and am sure have a lot more to contribute. Wishing you the very best!" tweeted Pujara.

On the other hand, India pacer Umesh Yadav also wrote, "You led the team to achieve unprecedented heights, No. 1 Test team for so many years & made them a dominant force to reckon with. I know that in your next chapter, you will continue to contribute the same way and reap more success for the country. All the best Skip. Been a pleasure."

‘T20 WC had put him under pressure’

IMAGE: Team India had a poor outing during the T20 World Cup under Virat Kohli. Photograph: Francois Nel/Getty Images

Former cricketer Atul Wassan on Sunday said Team India's debacle in the T20 World Cup, 2021, had put Virat Kohli under a lot of pressure. 

"Nothing shocks me. What shocked me was Mahendra Singh Dhoni quitting Test captaincy in the middle of the series in Australia. I think the way things have been going by the last couple of months India's debacle in the T20 WC there was pressure on him. He is not getting runs. At times he is pointing fingers on other players and as a captain he must do that to egg them on and I totally support him for that but the problem was that earlier he was leading by example but lately the thing is that his batsmanship has come down," Atul Wassan said.

"Every batsman, every player goes through that and it could accentuate that he was captaining all three formats. He also started the conundrum when he said he doesn't want to do T20 captaincy which was the right decision but I think the board actually took it in a skewed manner and he never expected that he will lose his 50 over captaincy be his goal was to win the World Cup. This is what was missing from his cupboard," he added.

Wassan further said that the scenario would have been different if Team India would have won the Test series in South Africa.

"Things change quickly in world cricket and you when you are on razor's edge you have to perform and that is why I have said Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara have to pull their weight and that is what Kohli must be thinking. He has won the World Cup already but as a captain it would have been cherry on the top and that is what he wanted," said Wassan.

"But looking at things he must have thought that I have to start WTC cycle again. He could not win a Test series in South Africa. Probably he could have won in South Africa then things could have been different," he added.

‘Wanted Kohli to continue as captain’

IMAGE: Madan Lal was surprised by Virat Kohli's decision to step down as Test skipper. Photograph: BCCI

Former Indian pacer Madan Lal on Sunday said that he did not want Virat Kohli to quit Test captaincy as he had built this current Indian team. Madan Lal's comments came a day after Kohli shocked the world by announcing his decision to step down as India's Test captain.

"These decisions are personal decisions whatever he has taken but his achievements will always be with him because he is the most successful captain-- the fourth most successful in the world. But I am a little surprised because it did not seem that he was going to quit captaincy the way he was captaining. He was a passionate captain, a captain who always wants to win. So, when we see such things on TV, then we feel that he is enjoying Test captaincy but suddenly he has dropped a bomb and has taken everyone by surprise," Lal said.

"I wanted him to captain India more because this Virat Kohli has built this Indian team. We became number one in Test cricket. He has also built a strong unit of pace bowlers.

"Today India's pace battery is world-renowned and it has happened because of his achievements. When you win Test matches, then it reflects on ODIs and T20Is. So, this guy has done everything. As a captain, he found out the weak points and strengthened them to make India a strong team. So, the entire credit goes to Virat Kohli," he added.

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