It’s often seen that Virat Kohli gets rested for a limited-overs series and Rohit Sharma takes over with great success. And once again, Rohit has been leading India in the T20Is against Bangladesh at home in place of rested Kohli.
Although Rohit has lost the first T20I against Bangladesh at Delhi, there’s no question on Hitman’s leadership skills and his success as a skipper-cum-batsman in T20 cricket.
With Kohli getting burdened with captaincy and batting responsibilities, it makes sense to hand over the leadership duties to Hitman to relieve pressure off Kohli’s shoulders.
Also, with two World T20 tournaments coming in the next two years, this is the right phase of a transition. Rohit leads and Kohli plays freely under him in T20Is.
So, should Rohit lead India permanently in T20Is for India?
Cricwizz takes a look at a few reasons why selectors should hand over T20I leadership duties full-time to Rohit.
Rohit Sharma does better as captain-cum-batsman in T20Is
It’s fair to stay that Rohit has led from the front in white-ball cricket, especially T20Is, whenever Kohli has been absent or rested from the shorter format.
In fact, Rohit’s brief captaincy in limited-overs cricket is extra-ordinary. In his brief career as skipper in limited-overs cricket, Rohit has hardly lost anything. In his combined tally as skipper in both ODIs and T20Is, he has led India in 26 games, winning 20 and losing just 6. In T20Is, he has led India in 16 games, winning 12, losing 4.
He has led from the front, scoring 543 runs, averaging 77.57 with 2 tons and 2 fifties as ODI skipper in 10 matches. And in his 16 matches as T20I skipper, he has scored 565 runs @ 37.66 with 2 tons and 3 fifties at a strike rate of 159.15. That’s a phenomenal record as skipper-cum-batsman.
Although Kohli too enjoys a great record as captain-cum-batsman in T20Is, Rohit has an edge over Kohli in terms of better winning percentage and better performance as a captain-batsman.
Rohit has a winning percentage of 75%, while Kohli has 61.53. Rohit has 2 tons and 3 fifties as captain in 16 T20Is, Kohli has just 6 fifties in 27 T20Is as a skipper.
Rohit Sharma has the knack of winning tournaments
Rohit has won four IPL titles out of four times he has led Mumbai Indians into the finals. That’s an impeccable record as a skipper. He beats MS Dhoni in this respect. On the other hand, regular captain Virat Kohli has won none, despite featuring in 3 IPL finals.
Rohit must be doing something right to achieve such great success for his IPL team. Even as skipper for Team India in limited-overs cricket, he has won all ODI or T20I series or tournaments except the T20I series against New Zealand this year. He has won the ODI and T20I series against Sri Lanka, Nidahas Trophy and Asia Cup.
It will reduce pressure on captain Kohli
With the World Test Championship gaining momentum, every Test match is important. And it can drain the captain a lot, mentally, physically and emotionally
Kohli will have to lead his team aggressively, plan better and execute it perfectly on a consistent basis to draw maximum points.
In such circumstances, it will be a wise move to allow Kohli to just focus on Test and ODI captaincy, while Rohit wears the skipper’s hat for T20Is. (There is more focus on T20Is now with two World T20 coming up).
The system has worked before successfully
When MS Dhoni quit Test cricket in 2014, Virat Kohli led India in the longer format. Kohli led India to No 1 Test rank, while Dhoni continued to lead India in limited-overs cricket until a couple of seasons ago. India did well in all formats under two captains.
The respect the two had for each other made the task easier. It also helped Kohli to focus on one format as skipper, while Dhoni led the team with aplomb in white-ball cricket.
So, the split captaincy can work again too.
Although there were reports earlier that there was a rift between Kohli and Rohit, the two have dismissed the allegations and enjoyed each other’s success. So, they both can play under each other without any clash of ego or attitude.