Virat Kohli to step down as India's T20I skipper after 2021 World Cup

NEW DELHI: Indian captain Virat Kohli today announced that he will step down as skipper of T20Is following the conclusion of the 2021 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, in the UAE and Oman, which begins on 17 October.

In a statement he posted on Twitter, Kohli said, "I've decided to step down as the T20 captain after this T20 World Cup in Dubai in October," before saying that over the last 8-9 years playing all 3 formats and captaining regularly for 5-6 years he feels the need to give himself space to be fully ready for the Indian team in test and ODI cricket.

In his statement, he further says, "I have given my everything to the Team during my time as T20 captain and I will continue to do so for the T20 captain and will continue to do so for the T20 team as a batsman moving forward."

The 32-year-old said that he had taken the decision after a lot of contemplation and discussions with my close people as well as the leadership group, including Ravi Shastri, Rohit Sharma, BCCI President Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah.

The right-handed top-order batsman, Kohli got the chance to captain in an ICC tournament for the first time in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy in which although the Indian cricket team reached the final, but lost to Pakistan by 180 runs. In the 2019 Cricket World Cup India lost the semi-final against New Zealand, in which Kohli was out for just a run.

India had a disastrous tour of New Zealand from January to March 2020 which was his lowest aggregate of runs in a tour where he played in all formats. India managed to win the T20I series 5–0, However the Kohli-led side was badly hammered during the ODI and Test leg of the tour losing 3-0 and 2-0 respectively. This was also India's first whitewash under Kohli's captaincy.

In June 2021, India lost the 2021 ICC World Test Championship Final to New Zealand which was Kohli's third defeat as India captain in knockouts and finals of ICC tournaments.

In the 90 T20Is for India, Kohli has captained the side in 45 matches and led the side to victory in 27 of them.


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