India eyeing next Test captain as Kohli era ends

India eyeing next Test captain as Kohli era ends


NEW DELHI: Following Virat Kohli’s abrupt resignation, the focus on Sunday turned to his possible successor, India’s Test captain, white captain Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul’s favourite to take over the high-pressure job.

Kohli, 33, shocked the cricket-mad nation on Saturday when he stepped down after his team’s 2-1 loss in the South African series.

The superstar batsman walks away as India’s most successful Test leader, with 40 wins and 17 losses in 68 Tests as captain.

“At the moment Rohit and Rahul are the only two names that come to mind” to succeed him, a senior official of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) told AFP on condition of anonymity.

“We will have to sit and discuss to come up with Kohli’s successor. Rohit is already the white-ball captain, so let’s see.”

Rohit, 34, took over the Twenty20 job from Kohli following India’s World Cup exit, and later replaced him as captain in the 50-over format as well.

KL Rahul leads India in the second South African Test after Kohli missed the game due to injury.

Rahul, 29, will also be named captain of the upcoming three one-day matches in South Africa after Rohit failed to recover from injury due to health issues.

Other controversial names include Rishabh Pant, who scored an unbeaten 100 in Cape Town’s third Test – albeit a failure.

Former captain Sunil Gavaska told TV channel India Today that the wicket-batsman should be considered.

“Tiger Pataudi was captain at the age of 21 under adverse circumstances but look what he did. He took to it like a duck to water,” Gavaskar told TV channel India Today.

Pant “has the capability of taking Indian cricket forward and making it a very exciting team to watch,” he added.

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