Some players are just not fit for leadership roles. They do astoundingly well as individual players contributing to the glory of their team but do not have the capacity to lead their teams to successive and high-voltage victories. Sachin Tendulkar knew this. He knew he was much better off as a team player rather than a team leader. Virat Kohli, unfortunately, did not know that.
Fast forward to 2022, Kohli achieved everything that he could in the last one decade. But now, his performance has become a hindrance for the team and thus, it is time for him to retire from the team. But who can replace Virat Kohli? We, in this article, have compiled a list of those who can replace Virat Kohli.
Ruturaj is an Indian cricketer who plays for Maharashtra in domestic cricket and Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League. He made his international debut in July 2021. He was the highest run scorer in IPL 2021. In June 2021, Gaikwad was selected in India’s One Day International (ODI) and T20 International (T20I) squad for the series against Sri Lanka. Now, he has been included in India’s ODI team for the series against West Indies. In June 2022, he scored his first T20 international fifty against South Africa. Due to his excellent performance, Ruturaj Gaikwad is receiving love and applause from the people of India. What surprises us the most is that he is only 25 years old which makes him a well-suited player to replace Virat Kohli.
Shubman Gill is a cricketer who has taken the cricketing world by storm. He is a right-handed opener for Punjab in domestic cricket. He made his first-class debut for Punjab in the 2017–18 Ranji Trophy on 17 November 2017. He was the vice-captain of the India Under-19 team for the 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup.
Then came IPL 2019. He came, he performed and he conquered the hearts of the people. He was also selected as the Emerging Player of the Tournament in IPL 2019. One of the most promising and best players in the Indian team, he has been praised by veteran leaders on multiple occasions. Gill is a top-order player and thus, he can be a good substitute for Kohli.
Suryakumar Ashok Yadav
Suryakumar plays for India in ODI and T20 International formats. He plays for Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League. Suryakumar made his first-class debut against Delhi during the 2010–11 Ranji Trophy. He started his career as a top scorer for Mumbai with 73 runs and was the only player to score a fifty in Mumbai’s first innings. He has made a permanent mark in international matches after getting selected in the Indian team during the T20I series against Ireland in June 2022. On 10 July 2022, Yadav scored his maiden T20 century against England in Nottingham, England and scored 117 runs in 55 balls. He is only the 5th Indian to score a century in T20 Internationals.
Shreyas Santosh Iyer
Shreyas has made it to the national team on the basis of his performance but has been on the bench on most occasions. Iyer is the captain of Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League. In March 2017, he was included in the Indian Test team as cover for Virat Kohli ahead of the fourth Test against Australia where he caught the eyeballs of the people because of his outstanding performance. He also plays ODI and T20 International for India. His temperament separates him from other competitors for Kohli’s spot.
Sanju Vishwanath Samson
Sanju is the captain of Team Kerala in domestic cricket and Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League. He is a right-handed top-order batsman and wicketkeeper. At the age of 14, he became the youngest cricketer from Kerala to be selected to play in the Ranji Trophy. In August 2014, Sanju was selected for India’s 17-man team to play in 5 ODIs and one T20I against England. For the last few years, he has been doing extremely well in the Indian Premier League. As of now, he has also been selected for the West Indies tour.
Why Virat Kohli needs to retire
Virat Kohli has been a phenomenal player. At the height of his cricketing career, he was an irreplaceable and unmatched asset for the Indian cricket team. Virat Kohli became the full-time captain in January 2017 against a visiting England side. Since then, he led India in 95 one-day internationals and managed to win 65 games for India. The man hit 21 centuries in the 91 innings he played during his captaincy. But when it comes to championships and World Cup matches – Virat Kohli has not been able to perform.
He was axed as the white ball captain of the Indian team on December 8, reportedly without any comprehensive talks with the BCCI. The Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) took a unilateral decision to remove Kohli from ODI captaincy and replace him with Rohit Sharma.
Read more: Time for Team India to drop Virat
Sure, Kohli is a brilliant player. But he is not captain material if he cannot win ICC trophies and dominate the global cricketing arena. Virat Kohli thinks he can control all aspects of Indian cricket, but that is simply not the case. Moreover, it was expected that after being removed as the captain, his performance will improve but it didn’t happen. Neither did the player learn from his mistakes nor did he emerge as a better player and this is why he needs to retire.