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Graeme Smith Justifies His Earlier Comments On Virat Kohli
By CricShots - Feb 10, 2018 11:51 am
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Former South African skipper Graeme Smith has now clarified his previous comments on whether the Indian skipper Virat Kohli was the right man to lead the Men in Blue in the long run. In January, after Team India lost the second Test match of their South Africa tour in Centurion, Smith had doubted whether the Kohli would be capable of handling the pressure of overseas failure as a skipper of the Indian team was better off with someone else at the helm.

Kohli
Virat Kohli

However, Virat has faced a decent amount of criticism from media and fans on social media alike for team selection after losing two back to back Test matches. However, the man actually shut everyone up with the team’s brilliant comeback in the third Test in Johannesburg – not only by winning and ending up with a scoreline 2-1 but also by showing some gutsiness on a pitch that got reported to ICC for misbehaving.

Also read: Smith terms India series as an eye opener

Clarifying his earlier comments, Smith said, “I don’t know; when I look at him, if he is a long-term captaincy option for India. At the end of this year, he’d have been away from home for a while, the pressure he’ll face, the scrutiny from the press – I know he only gets that in India – but if you’re away from home and you’re struggling for form as a team, I don’t know if I’d want to burden Virat Kohli with that….Or if India has a better leader in that environment.”

Kohli
Virat Kohli

But speaking from St. Moritz, where he is for the Ice Cricket Tournament, Smith claims that his previous comments were meant in a positive and constructive manner and he sincerely hopes that Kohli goes on to be as successful. As quoted in India Today, Graeme said, “Virat is an incredible player. My comments on his captaincy were constructive. I hope captaincy does not burden Virat. He will mature as a captain with time and he holds the Indian team together.”

Also read: Smith doubts Virat's captaincy

In the ongoing ODI series, Virat has taken up his responsibility of being the leader well and good. India has won all the three matches so far with their skipper leading the campaign from the front, scoring 112 in the first match in Durban, 46* in Centurion and 160* in the third match in Cape Town.

Virat ended the Test series as the leading run scorer with 286 runs and now in the same position for the ODI series as well, with 318 runs already under his belt and three more matches to go.

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