'Not the right way to do it' - Sanjay Manjrekar unhappy with timing of Virat Kohli's decision to quit RCB captaincy

‘Not the right way to do it’ – Sanjay Manjrekar unhappy with timing of Virat Kohli’s decision to quit RCB captaincy

Virat Kohli has been the RCB captain since 2013.

Virat Kohli and Sanjay Manjrekar
Virat Kohli and Sanjay Manjrekar. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI and Getty Images)

Cricketer-turned-expert Sanjay Manjrekar feels the timing of Virat Kohli’s decision to step down as the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) captain after the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) isn’t correct. The 32-year-old has been the full-time leader of the team since 2013 but is yet to win a title despite making it to the final of the 2016 season.

Incidentally, Kohli also is the only player to have played for the same team in all the 14 editions since the T20 tournament started in 2008. Also, he is the team’s leading run-scorer amassing more than 6000 runs. But Manjrekar believes the timing of the decision of Kohli mid-way through the IPL is not ideal.

He also compared his decision to former team India captains Sunil Gavaskar and MS Dhoni, when they decided to relinquish captaincy mid-way from the series in 1985 and 2014 respectively. Manjrekar feels all the captains should announce their wish to quit captaincy only after the completion of an ongoing series.

“When Sunil Gavaskar won the Mini World Cup in 1985-86, he had said on the last day of the tournament that ‘My teammates have given me a brilliant gift on the last day of my captaincy’, so it came as a surprise and the timing was great. He played the whole tournament and irrespective of the result, his decision was ready.

“So, I believe that as a captain you should play the whole series, whether you win or lose, and then make the decision… Even MS Dhoni left the captaincy during Australia and Virat Kohli took over soon after. For captaincy, I don’t think this is the right way to do it,” said Sanjay Manjrekar to ESPN Cricinfo.

I’ve not been able to work this out, says Manjrekar

The former India batter was shocked and surprised by Virat Kohli’s wish to step down from captaincy during the UAE leg of IPL. Manjrekar also feels generally cricketers who want to retire convey the message to teammates and support staff before the start of the series.

“See, Virat Kohli is such a cricketer who invests a lot of energy in every match. We’ve seen it for the past few years that he was under immense workload pressure, being a sure-shot player and captain in all three formats and the IPL as well where this is his 9th year as captain. But I don’t understand this timing. He said in advance of the T20 World Cup that he’ll leave it after the tournament.

“And then here as well, right after the tournament [he said] he’ll leave the captaincy after it. Players say they’ll retire after a particular year or series, but doing so for captaincy resignations… I have not been able to work out this timing,” Manjrekar further added.