Indian cricket is once again in crisis. Remember the good old days of 1980s and 90s wherein the star crickets were fighting against each other and forgetting to fight against opponents as a team. The recent spat between Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma over the captaincy issue seems to be very much similar and as dirty as that we witnessed it in earlier times.
In 1980s we had Kapil Dev and Gavaskar fighting against each other; later came Azharuddin and Sachin Tendulkar; and then we had Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid. Now we have Kohli and Rohit making their hatred public. But the role of Ganguly as the president of Indian cricket board (BCCI) is definitely a thing that has to be questioned.
It all started with Virat Kohli making an announcement that he would no longer be the captain of Indian T20 International team. The BCCI took this statement for advantage and decided to have one captain for white cricket ball and threw Kohli from ODI captaincy as well. This didn’t go well with the Indian star batsman and he has asked for leave from ODIs to be played in South Africa in next month. Kohli cited his daughter’s first birthday as the reason!
Meanwhile, we have Rohit dramatically pulling his hamstring and becoming unfit for three tests that would be played this month in South Africa. The reason being Kohli is the captain and Rohit is not interested in playing with him! This is news that has been making waves across.
Now comes the aspect of cleaning the dirty linen in public. Ganguly comes out with a statement that Kohli never responded to BCCI’s request to continue as T20Is captain and that he insisted to stay away from the coveted post. He also went on to say that BCCI contacted the star batsman about ODIs, and he did not give any response. So the BCCI has decided to change captaincy. Moreover, Kohli had sought for leave from the board after Rohit was named as captain!
Now, Kohli came out to embarrass BCCI and Ganguly. He said no one had requested him to consider continuing as captain and that he had not sought leave in January and not play ODIs. He went on to say that he was told about the board’s decision on ODI captaincy while he was attending the team selection meeting for tests. Kohli alleged that he was called just one and half before the meeting for test selections and at the end of the meeting he was told that BCCI has decided to have one captain for white ball cricket and it would be Rohit Sharma. Kohli accepted their decision.
But now the issue is two unanimous BCCI members have come out to say that Kohli has in fact asked for leave from ODIs. So who is speaking the truth? What is happening in Indian cricket? Is the power struggle so obvious in BCCI?