The former Indian skipper, MS Dhoni has given away his captaincy and passed on the baton to the young rising superstar Virat Kohli to take Team India forward. Today, during a press conference Virat said, “I would like to take the bulk of the responsibility now and let others express themselves around me.”
Talking about Dhoni’s role in the batting line-up, Kohli conceded “He has played a lot of limited overs matches. He will not have the extra burden of taking over responsibilities. Sometimes, it can restrict you as a batsman. He will be able to express himself as a batsman now. He is a very smart cricketer. He will be able to play with a bit more assurance and freedom. I am not saying that he will go out and slog every ball. He will be able to experiment more.”
The 28-year old justified the selection of veterans like Yuvraj Singh, he said, “We cannot leave so much burden on MS (Dhoni) alone. There needs to be one more guy. MS has been guiding the youngsters, which is fine if you have 15-20 games to a big tournament, but if you have only three games, you need to get all your resources in place. Right now we don’t have time to nurture: that’s why Yuvi was brought into the team.”
He further elaborated, “We thought of Rayudu as well, but he had been injured and did not have much of game time behind him. Yuvi has had a really good first class season. Hardik and Kedar can learn a lot from them”.
Speaking of Shikhar Dhawan’s diminishing form in Test cricket, Kohli said: “Situations always change, especially the cricketers’ form and performances. Everyone is aware of Dhawan’s ability. You need to keep him in a good head space, because once he is clear, he can really take the game away. It is better to leave him to his own planning because he is so instinctive. He possesses a lot of quality and ability to set up the game.”
Kohli concluded by talking about the other opening options which he has, he said, “Ajinkya Rahane found his rhythm in the warm-up games. Rahul is coming off from almost a double hundred at Chennai. So we’ll have to figure out who fits in the combination, but they are all in a good space, which makes my job easy.”