Former India captain Sourav Ganguly has once again clarified his role in Virat Kohli’s captaincy saga, reiterating that he did not remove Kohli from any captaincy roles. Kohli stepped down as T20I captain after the 2021 World Cup but was subsequently removed from ODI and Test captaincy as well, leading to speculation about Ganguly’s involvement in the decision.
Ganguly, who was BCCI president at the time, has maintained that Kohli’s decision to quit T20I captaincy prompted the board to ask him to step down from all white-ball formats.
“I didn’t remove Virat from captaincy,” Sourav Ganguly said on Dadagiri Unlimited Season 10. “I have said this a lot of times. He wasn’t interested to lead in T20Is. So, after he made that decision, I told him, if you’re not interested to lead in T20Is, it’s better if you step down from entire white-ball cricket. Let there be a white-ball captain and a red-ball captain.”
Sourav Ganguly also revealed that he initially had to persuade Rohit Sharma to take on the captaincy role.
“I pushed Rohit Sharma a bit to take up the captaincy role because he wasn’t interested to lead in all three formats of the game. So, maybe I have a bit of contribution in that but no matter who is administrating, it’s the players who perform well on the field. I was appointed as the President of BCCI to work for the betterment of Indian cricket, this is a small part of it,” Sourav Ganguly said.
Kohli’s reign as India’s captain was marked by both successes and near misses. He led India to 40 victories in 68 Tests, becoming the most successful Indian captain in the format’s history. He also captained India in 95 ODIs and 50 T20Is.
While Kohli’s record as captain was impressive, he couldn’t guide India to an ICC trophy during his tenure. India finished runners-up at the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy and the 2021 World Test Championship Final under Kohli’s leadership.