Ravi Shastri, the former team director, feels Virat Kohli should replace Mahendra Singh Dhonias India’s captain in limited-overs cricket. Kohli led his IPL franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore brilliantly in the ninth edition, and took it to the final, where they lost to SunRisers Hyderabad.
Talking to India Today, Shastri said that it is the right time to make this move if India want to build a strong ODI team for the 2019 World Cup.
“You have to see where India is going to go in three years down the line. There’s no major events in three years when you are back with the world cups. So, this is your best time to think and build. By no stretch of imagination you are taking anything away from Dhoni. He can still contribute massively as a player. I think the time has come for Dhoni to enjoy himself and enjoy the game. End of the day, it is about how hungry Dhoni is, how passionate he is. Also the time has come where you have a guy whom you have groomed over a period of time. Kohli is ready,” Shastri told India Today Television.
“India will hardly play any One-day cricket in the next 18 months and the gaps between Tests and ODIs are massive. So, here’s your time to look ahead and see what you can do with an Indian side all round three years down the line. If I am the chairman of selectors, I would be thinking in that fashion. No question about that. Virat is ready to lead in all formats. It’s a hard decision, it is a catch 22 but like I said, I would be thinking from now on.
“So, the game has to evolve, hard decisions have to be taken but such is life. And nothing wrong in that, it is in the interest of Indian cricket. Down the line if you think Dhoni is still the best captain, keep him as captain. But the issue here is the breaks and do you have a guy ready. So, my answer is you have a guy ready,” he said.