Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. Image-AP

Former England pacer Steve Harmison has said if Virat Kohli retains his Test captaincy, this will be good for the sake of Test cricket in general because he drives the longest format in the right way. Kohli resigned from the T20 cricket ahead of the second leg of the IPL 2021 and the T20 World Cup in the UAE.

A few days ago, Kohli was removed from the ODI captaincy duties and was replaced by Rohit Sharma as India will be playing a three-match ODI against South Africa in their backyard. Before the ODI games, they will play the three-match Test series in the leadership of Kohli.

Virat Kohli. Photo- BCCI
Virat Kohli. Photo- BCCI

In 2014, the 33-year-old became the full-time Test captain after MS Dhoni decided to retire from the longest format. Under his captaincy, India have won their first-ever Test series against Australia in 2018-19. They played the final of the first edition of the World Test Championship 2019-21 earlier this year.

After this, the Virat Kohli-led was leading by 2-1 against England in the five-match Test series in their backyard before the last game was postponed due to the COVID19 outbreak in the Indian camp. At home, India have clean-swept teams like South Africa, England, New Zealand and West Indies.

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Steve Harmison explains why Virat Kohli needs to be the Test captain

Steve Harmison
Steve Harmison. Image-Twitter

“I think Virat’s at a point now where he probably just wants to play. I think it’s so important that for international Test match cricket that he keeps his captaincy because I think he drives Test match cricket in the right way. It’s very important to him; he speaks about it passionately and he cares about it. And in the world of T20 and all these franchise leagues around the world, I think having a leader of a powerful nation like India wanting and driving Test cricket forward is a great thing for international cricket,” Harmison said

The former England pacer added that the India ODI team is not as good as England. He feels that it is the right time for Kohli to pass the captaincy baton to Rohit Sharma and give him the license to operate the team the way he wants and take the back seat.

“From a one-dayer point of view, it’s an embarrassment of rich. This team that India’ve got now in one-day cricket is nearly if not as good as England’s pool of one-day players are to play that side so that format of the game. I just think is it the right time for him to pass the baton on to Rohit and say look, “it’s your team now, 50 overs and 20 overs. You set the benchmark. You go out front and lead and I’ll just drop back into being one of the lieutenants and play Test match cricket as a leader”? I think it’s the right time,” elaborated the former England pacer.

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