Cricket in 2018: 5 Surprising decisions by captain Virat Kohli

Cricket in 2018: 5 Surprising decisions by captain Virat Kohli

Captain Kohli has made a name for himself for tinkering with the playing eleven every now and then.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

At the moment, Virat Kohli looks set to create his own legacy as skipper. There were apprehensions all around on whether he would be able to deliver as captain or not after replacing the legendary MS Dhoni. But so far, the dashing batsman has done extremely well. He started his captaincy stint with the historic 2-1 series win in Sri Lanka in 2015 and hasn’t looked back since then. In the same year, he led India to a thumping 3-0 win over South Africa.

In the extended 2016-17 home season, India thrashed New Zealand, England, Bangladesh and Australia to bolster their position at the top of the Test rankings. Earlier this year, he also led India to Test wins in England and South Africa but unfortunately, his side lost both the series. But while Kohli is doing a commendable job as captain, one cannot ignore the fact that he has also been garnering the attention for some surprising decision. 

Kohli has made a name for himself for tinkering with the playing eleven every now and then. Unfortunately for him, the decisions have backfired more often than not. So with this year set to end in a few days, we take a look at some surprising decisions from the India skipper.

1. Dropping Bhuvneshwar Kumar for 2nd Test in South Africa:

Bhuvneshwar Kumar of Indi
Bhuvneshwar Kumar of India. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Contrary to the popular speculations, India had included Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the first Test. With South African pitches more favourable to bowlers with pace, including a bowler in the side who relies more on swing was a surprising one. However, India took the gamble and it paid off.

Bhuvneshwar destroyed South Africa’s top-order to put India in the driver’s seat. He picked up four wickets in the first innings and added another two to his tally to finish with match figures of 6/120 in the opening Test in Cape Town. Besides his efforts with the ball, he also provided a vital contribution with the bat, scoring 25 off 86 deliveries in the first innings and adding another 13 off 41 deliveries in the second.

Unfortunately, his all-round effort went in vain as the hosts held on to take the lead in the series. But unlike most of the Indian players, Bhuvneshwar earned widespread praise for his show. However, India sprung a huge surprise by dropping him for the second Test before bringing him in the playing eleven again for the third Test.