Sanjay Manjrekar Ignores Virat Kohli In The List Of Great Indian Captains

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For Sanjay Manjrekar, Virat Kohli as a captain is not in the same league as MS Dhoni or Kapil Dev. In fact, Manjrekar picked the likes of Sourav Ganguly and Sunil Gavaskar as greater Indian captains than Kohli, who has recently stepped down as India’s all-format skipper.

Speaking in an interview with News 18, Manjrekar picked his India’s greatest captains’ list in which he put Virat Kohli below four other skippers. For the 56-year-old commentator, the results in ICC events mattered more than wins in the bilateral series. Hence, he lauded MS Dhoni highly, who won three ICC titles between 2007 and 2013.

“MS Dhoni is clearly one of India’s greatest captains. I judge captains generally on international cricket and also on ICC events. Because that’s when you are really tested. When you are playing bilateral cricket, you are going to the office and coming back. There is not much pressure there. But ICC events, that is where Dhoni has been tremendous. Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar, Saurav Ganguly, and Virat Kohli,” Manjrekar told News 18.

Sanjay Manjrekar Ignores Virat Kohli In The List Of Great Indian Captains

Kohli took over India’s limited-overs captaincy in 2017 and led the team to Champions Trophy 2017 final, World Cup 2019 semi-final, the WTC final; India suffered a group stage exit at the T20 World Cup last year.  But it was in Tests where Kohli left a terrific legacy, having taken Indian cricket to newer heights.

Manjrekar said that Kohli led from the front and fought till the end of the game, but eventually doesn’t have any ICC trophy to show.

“When you look at Kohli, there are a lot of things to like about him because he is somebody who led by example. The Wanderers Test match before this series, when they played on a treacherous pitch. India lost the series 2-1 but Kohli set an example as captain. He said that we want to win this despite a pitch that could have killed somebody. That kept India’s morale high. That is what you get with Virat Kohli, the never-say-die attitude.

“In the World Test Championship final India lost. But till the last minute India through Virat Kohli was still fighting to salvage the game. But finally, you’ve got to talk about the results. The results were not coming,” Manjrekar rationalised.

Sanjay Manjrekar Ignores Virat Kohli In The List Of Great Indian Captains

Sanjay Manjrekar further asserted how Kapil Dev, Ganguly, and Gavaskar had a large impact on Indian cricket, while stating that with Kohli there is a lot of “hype”.

“So when we talk about all-time greats, it would be very unfair to not count Dhoni in that. Kapil Dev at a time when there was an inferiority complex at the world level. Sourav Ganguly after the match-fixing era gave India some overseas wins. Sunil Gavaskar also. So these are all great leaders.

“You live in an age where there are a lot of platforms, so the hype is more. But Indian cricket didn’t start 10 years back. These are guys that I believe have been better captains than Virat Kohli who has been very good in his own right,” he added.

Also Read: Ian Chappell Makes A Big Statement On Virat Kohli’s Leadership Skills