India needs leaders like Sourav Ganguly, MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli, proclaims Rashid Latif
Rashid Latif compared India's captaincy crisis to Pakistan of the late 90s|
Rashid Latif has hit out at the Indian team's policies of constantly changing captains since Virat Kohli stepped down from leadership, stating the team needs a stable man at the helm. He compared the ongoing situation to the 1990s Pakistan Cricket team and urged the side to sort out their lineup.
Indians for the past decade and a half had grown comfortable seeing familiar faces in charge of the cricket team and accepted them as the natural choice selections. It started with a stellar reign under Sourav Ganguly who transformed India into an aggressive side that does not fear taking on any opposition, with the Bengal man going on to become the country's most successful Test captain. Soon after MS Dhoni was present in the same rules and by the end of his captaincy era had overtaken the record comfortably. The wicket-keeper then gave way to the fierce Virat Kohli, who not only surpassed the record but set a benchmark high enough to ensure his name stays at the top for years.
Bizarrely, however, from such stability India has gone to having eight skippers in a little over a year's time, shuffling between split captaincies to intermittent captains. It all started when Virat Kohli gave up his post at the helm of the team, handing over the baton to Rohit Sharma. However, a run of injuries meant the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and KL Rahul were given the honour of serving as the Men in Blue's red-ball captain. Similarly, large-scale workload management being adopted by the BCCI has seen Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya and Shikhar Dhawan all lead the side over the past couple of months, against South Africa, Ireland and Wes Indies respectively.
The latest squad announcement for a three-match ODI series in Zimbabwe included Dhawan as skipper again, leading to former Pakistan captain Rashid Latif commenting about the inconsistency of Indian leadership and comparing it to the Pakistan team of the 90s.
“Everyone talks about backup. But they have now produced seven backup captains in the past year! This is the first time I'm seeing this in India's history. Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant, Jasprit Bumrah... they are repeating the same mistake as Pakistan's in the 1990s,” Latif said on his YouTube channel Caught Behind as reported by Hindustan Times.
Of late, the Indian team has experienced an overflow of talent, failing to establish a proper first-playing XI. The poor form of Virat Kohli has only further complicated matters, as has the idea of resting senior players frequently and injury concerns. Latif stated the Men in Blue were in dire need of one headfast captain much like the years gone by.
“They haven't found a solid opener, nor do they have a stable middle-order. They just want a new captain. No captain is playing consistently for them. KL Rahul is unfit now, Rohit was unfit before. Virat is mentally unfit. So, they will have to think about it. They are changing so many captains.. they need a leader like Sourav Ganguly, MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli,” he opined.