'Didn't remove Kohli from captaincy': Sourav Ganguly

Kohli gave up T20 captaincy in 2021, but wanted to continue to lead in ODIs and Tests

Sourav Ganguly and Virat Kohli (File) Sourav Ganguly and Virat Kohli | Salil Bera

Former BCCI president Sourav Ganguly clarified in a show he hosted that he did not remove Virat Kohli from captaincy in the aftermath of India's exit from the T20 World Cup in 2021.

Kohli had relinquished the T20 captaincy after the group-stage exit, but wanted to continue to lead in ODIs and Tests. However, Rohit Sharma was made the white-ball captain soon after, and also handed over the reins of the Test team once Kohli stepped down as skipper in the longer format in January 2022.

Reacting to a video in the reality show Dadagiri Unlimited Season 10, Ganguly said, "I didn't remove Virat from captaincy. I have said this several times. He (Kohli) was not interested to lead in T20Is. So, after he made that decision, I told him, if you're not interested to lead in T20Is, it's better if you step down from entire white-ball cricket. Let there be a white-ball captain and a red-ball captain."

The mismatch in the versions of Ganguly and Kohli on this incident had added to the confusion.

ALSO READ: Ganguly's version, Kohli's version and the truth

Ganguly said that Sharma was not interested in taking up the skipper's role in Tests, too, but the former BCCI boss managed to convince him. "I pushed Rohit Sharma a bit to take up the captaincy role because he wasn't interested to lead in all three formats of the game. So, maybe I have a bit of contribution in that but no matter who is administrating, it's the players who perform well on the field. I was appointed as the President of BCCI to work for the betterment of Indian cricket, this is a small part of it."

Despite India's loss in the final of the recently-concluded ODI World Cup, Ganguly has thrown his weight behind Sharma, saying he should lead India at least till the T20 World Cup in June next year.

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