Although Virat Kohli loves to lead from the front and is on course to become the most successful Indian skipper, his captaincy has always been questionable. There are few captaincy blunders that has made a dent in Kohli’s captaincy career. Have a look.
Choosing to field first in 2017 Champions Trophy final
India had posted a big total against Pakistan in the league game and won it comfortably. And rather surprisingly, India chose to field first in the final against Pakistan and conceded a big total of 338/5 and lost the match by 180 runs. India did not play to their strengths and went with Kohli’s penchant to chase. It hurt India’s chances in the title round.
Changing batting order has not allowed players to settle down
Kohli has never for once went with the same playing XI in his captaincy career in Test cricket. The constant chopping and changing of batting order has not helped the confidence of his teammates and hence, they lack consistency. Kohli is the only batsman to get a continuous run and he has performed every single time. With an unsettled batting combination, India are struggling overseas to score runs.
Dropping key players
Kohli has dropped Ajinkya Rahane for the first two Tests in South Africa and paid the price for a weak middle-order. Rahane’s replacement Rohit Sharma was all at sea in the Test series. Kohli’s argument was that he went in for form rather than class. Rahane came back in the third Test and scored valuable runs to pave the way for a win. In the same series, Kohli dropped Bhuvneshwar too in the series and paid price for it. Bhuvi was back for the third Test and India won the match.
Dropping Pujara in the first Test at Birmingham in 2018
Pujara who has a batting average of above 50 in Tests was dropped for struggling Shikhar Dhawan in 2018 Birmingham Test just because the former had a poor county season. And India missed Pujara dearly to wear the England bowling unit and lost the match. Dhawan and neither the new No 3 KL Rahul fared any better in the Birmingham Test.
Wrong choice of bowling option
Kohli has been guilty of not using his bowling resources properly. In the Birmingham Test, when Sam Curran was slaying the Indian bowling line-up, Ashwin was out of the attack for an hour when the off-spinner is quite handy against the left-hander. Again, in the 2015 Test at Galle, when Dinesh Chandimal was counter-attacking on his way to ton, Ashwin was again absent from the attack and Kohli went for an out-of-form Harbhajan Singh and outdated Amit Mishra. India lost both the match.