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I don’t know if Virat Kohli is a long-term captain option for India: Graeme Smith

Virat Kohli as a captain is exactly opposite to that of MS Dhoni.

Graeme Smith
Graeme Smith. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Virat Kohli has faced a lot of criticism lately. After winning every series that came across, Virat has finally lost one as a captain after a long time. India and their fans are not used to see India losing a game without giving much of a fight. That has slowly constructed into a criticism and has reached a point where people are questioning the ability of the team.

Virat Kohli as a captain is exactly opposite to that of MS Dhoni. The ever so calm MS Dhoni gave India everything it craved for over the years, Virat has a tougher job. He has to maintain the standards and he is doing that as of now. However, there are some former cricketers who are critical of his emotions. The way he lets his emotion drive him on the field is something Graeme Smith talked about.

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I don’t think he is a long-term captain – Smith

Graeme Smith, a former Protea captain and the most successful as well, was very critical of the Indian. He said that he questions his credibility as a captain. He is someone who leads by example on the field but there needs to be someone who controls him as well. Smith talked about Virat’s emotions and how he needs to control them.

“When I look at him, I don’t know if he is a long-term captain option for India. His performances [with the bat] speak for themselves, but whether he can get the best out of the players around him is the question,” Smith said while talking at a Supersport breakfast. “When I look at Virat, I think he needs someone in his corner who can constructively challenge him and help him grow,” said Smith.

Smith said that he is capable of knowing his game well and is tactically very good as well. However, he said there is a need for a player who would be able to approach Virat in a calm way and challenge his ideas. That can make him an even better leader.

“He has all the capabilities tactically, he’s good at knowing his own game, he sets a real standard on the field for everyone else and leads by example. I think it’s on the emotional side [he needs to improve], he gets very fired up without thinking about how that affects other people.

“If he had a very constructive person in his environment, who is able to have good conversations with him to make him think and challenge his ideas in a constructive way – not in an angry-aggressive way – to help him open his eyes to other possibilities; that would make him a very good leader,” Smith added to Sport 24.

‘He needs to control his reactions’

The former South African captain said that Virat needs to control his reactions. That is because his reactions affect the entire team. He also suggested that the Indian captain needs to find a middle ground where he will be able to connect to every player in the team.

“Sometimes as a leader, you have to consider how that impacts others in the environment. That’s an area of his leadership that he needs to cope with. Sometimes his reactions to certain situations can impact the team.”

“He needs to find a level where he can connect with all his players, to help the India team become as successful as he is. Sometimes, you can be the best player in the world and love that intensity, but you don’t think about what your teammates are going through,” Smith concluded.

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