dean elgar

KL Rahul. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
KL Rahul. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

KL Rahul Was Surprised After Being Told By Virat Kohli That He Might Have To Captain India In the 2nd Test

KL Rahul has been looked at as one of India’s future captains. But even before he became one of the frontrunners for the role to succeed Virat Kohli for the position, KL Rahul had the experience of leading the Indian side in Johannesburg during the second Test against South Africa in January 2022.

KL Rahul on Friday recalled the exchange he had with regular skipper Virat Kohli on the morning of that Test which came as a “huge surprise” to him. Virat Kohli had injured his back ahead of the Johannesburg match and hence KL Rahul, who was the vice-captain of the team, was given the responsibility to lead the side. Virat Kohli was leading the Indian side in South Africa Test series. They had won the opener and were aiming to script their first-ever Test series win in South Africa as they headed to Johannesburg.

KL Rahul with Virat Kohli (REUTERS)
KL Rahul with Virat Kohli (REUTERS)

KL Rahul Was Surprised As He Didn’t Expect Captaincy To Come So Quickly

Speaking on Red Bull Cricket Room on Clubhouse, KL Rahul recalled that he didn’t expect captaincy to come so quickly to him before revealing the words Virat Kohli said to him that left him surprised.

“Like everyone else, it came to me as a huge surprise to me,” said KL Rahul.

“I was the vice-captain. As a vice-captain you slowly prepare yourself to become the captain in due time. But then I didn’t expect it to come to me so quickly and in such circumstances: the morning of the game, Virat (Kohli) came to me in the bus and said, ‘My back is not feeling great, you might have to captain the team’.”

Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)
Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)

“It didn’t put me off or my mindset didn’t change a lot. All of us, in some way or the other, when we play the game we are our own captain and in our head we are playing situations like we are a captain. When that ‘C’ in the team list comes, it does feel new and it is something you are proud of. It is an honour not many people get and it is something you always dream of and I was very happy, very grateful.”

KL Rahul was put in charge of the team after Virat Kohli had missed the fixture due to an injury. Dean Elgar struck a gritty, unbeaten 96 as South Africa chased down 240 with seven wickets in hand to consign India to their first-ever defeat in Johannesburg.

KL Rahul: It Was A Great Learning To Be The Test Captain Although It Wasn’t Pleasing To Start Off With A Loss

Unfortunately for KL Rahul, India had lost the Test match by seven wickets leaving the series level at 1-1. But KL Rahul took it as a learning experience and admitted that he rather enjoyed leading the Indian team.

“It was very challenging. We were 1-0 up, playing South Africa in South Africa. It was a really good game of cricket; there were ups and downs for both the teams. South Africa players really well and held their nerve towards the end to win the game. Wasn’t the most pleasant thing for me to start off with a loss as a captain, but it was a great learning and I enjoyed those 4-5 days on the field. We fought till the very end,” he said.

KL Rahul (Image Credit: Twitter)
KL Rahul (Image Credit: Twitter)

KL Rahul later led India’s ODI side in South Africa later that month and he remains in contention for the captaincy post despite selectors unanimously selecting Rohit Sharma as the all-format captain. KL Rahul had a shameful record registered his name after hosts South Africa defeated India in the 3rd and final ODI of the series in Cape Town. With this defeat, KL Rahul has become the first Indian to lose the first three ODIs as a captain.

South Africa 229 (Petersen 62, Bavuma 51, Thakur 7-61) and 243 for 3 (Elgar 96*, van der Dussen 40, Ashwin 1-26) beat India 202 (Rahul 50, Ashwin 46, Jansen 4-31, Rabada 3-64, Olivier 3-64) and 266 (Rahane 58, Ngidi 3-43, Jansen 3-67) by seven wickets

Dean Elgar

Dean Elgar Urges Players To Choose National Commitments Over IPL

South Africa Test captain Dean Elgar has appealed to his players, especially bowlers to choose international cricket over IPL. Notable that the two test match series between South Africa and Bangladesh is all set to clash with the IPL 2022. It’s likely that none of their first-choice pace attack would be available for the series as Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi, and Marco Jansen all have an IPL contract.

The first Test match will be played at Kingsmead, Durban from March 31 and St. George Park at Port Elizabeth will host the second match from April 8. So Cricket South Africa wants to know the availability status of the players in advance.

South Africa's Dean Elgar celebrates with teammates and the trophy after winning the match and the series, Third Test - South Africa v India - Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town, South Africa - January 14, 2022 | Photo Credit: Reuters
South Africa’s Dean Elgar celebrates with teammates and the trophy after winning the match and the series, Third Test – South Africa v India – Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town, South Africa – January 14, 2022 | Photo Credit: Reuters

“Just this morning I got off a call with the respective personnel at CSA to try and give us a guideline as to whether the players will be available or not. The outcome of that meeting is that the players need to give CSA an indication whether they’re keen to go to the IPL or if they’re keen to play for the Test side,” Elgar spoke in an online press conference on Friday.

Elgar gave a hint that all frontline bowlers would choose IPL ahead of international commitments.

File photo of Anrich Nortje. | BCCI / Sportzpics
File photo of Anrich Nortje. | BCCI / Sportzpics

“I need my best players”- Dean Elgar

It’s a tough one leaving that up to the players, but this is how we’ll see where their loyalty lies. They mustn’t forget that Test and one-day cricket got them into the IPL, not the other way around. That’s all I can give you now. I wish I had more, just for my own personal sanity. So I can prepare, knowing that most of my bowlers are potentially not going to be there if they choose to go the IPL route. Hopefully by next week that will be clearer for us,” he added.

He also highlighted the fact that both venues historically are helpful for slower bowlers so it won’t be a straightforward one. Sri Lanka beat the hosts on same venues in 2019 to win their first-ever series in the rainbow nation.

“The venues are more suited for the opposition; I think that brings them into the game. I can’t take the field without my best side, in order to give ourselves the best chance. I need my best players,” Dean Elgar stated.

However, Elgar also said that he would understand players’ decisions if they choose IPL.

“You don’t want players to miss out on a big occasion like the IPL, by no means. But I’d still like to think playing for your country is bigger than that,” he concluded.

Also read Gautam Gambhir Feels Experts Are Overly Critical Of Virat Kohli At Times

Dean Elgar file photo (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

“It Was Good To See The Young Guys Come In And Test Our Depth,”- Dean Elgar Heaps Praises For Sarel Erwee and Kyle Verreynne

South Africa Test captain Dean Elgar lauded his team’s efforts to bounce back in the second test at Hagley Oval Christchurch. He especially praised the youngsters like Sarel Erwee and Kyle Verreynne who showed character at crucial moments in the second test match.

Notable that South Africa faced a thrashing innings defeat inside three days in the first test at the same venue. But in the second test, they turned things dramatically. On the first day itself, he surprised everyone with his bat-first decision but it turned out to be a masterstroke as Sarel Erwee scored his maiden test hundred in his only 3rd innings. And in the second innings when things got trickier, wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne scored a fluent hundred to put the proteas in a commanding position.

Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)
Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)

“It was good to see the young guys come in and test our depth,” Dean Elgar spoke to on Wednesday

“We had Sarel come in and get 100 in his first Test series and showed what he is made of and it is great to see him influence our batting unit, Sarel is a bit older and understands the concept of hard work. He is an inexperienced Test cricketer, but he is not an inexperienced cricketer in the bigger scheme of things,” he added.

Elgar also spoke highly for Kyle Verreyne who replaced Quinton de Dock after his sudden retirement from the longest form of cricket.

Kyle Verreynne
Kyle Verreynne

“Great to see Kyle Verreynne come in and do what he does best”- Dean Elgar

“Quinton de Kock who has retired, and those are big shoes to fill. For him to come out to play his natural style of cricket in the second innings and get his first 100 was brilliant. It’s great for him as a player and his confidence. Kyle (Verreynne) has been around for some time, he is inexperienced in Test cricket and maybe a lot of scrutiny has been put on him too early in his career, which is unfair, bearing in mind he has a huge role to play in this side being a wicketkeeper-batter. Great to see him come in and do what he does best,” Dean Elgar said.

With the win in the second test, the Proteas retained their unbeaten record against New Zealand in a Test series.

Also Read: “His Technique, His Positivity, His Footwork, His Balance, I Like All Of That”- Sourav Ganguly Hails Virat Kohli Ahead Of His 100th Test Match

Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)
Dean Elgar ( Image Source: Twitter)

Dean Elgar’s Decision To Bat First Paid Off But He Feared It Might Have Backfired; Proteas Clinch 2nd Test To Level Series 1-1 Against Kiwis

Dean Elgar, the Proteas skipper conceded after securing the Test win against New Zealand to level the two-match series 1-1 on Tuesday that he would have looked an “absolute idiot” had his decision to bat first on February 25 backfired and the Proteas lost the match.

South Africa bucked the trend at the Hagley Oval and elected to bat first, and thanks to a century from Sarel Erwee in the first innings they managed to post 364 and take a 71-run first-innings lead, which proved crucial in the end.

The Proteas then declared their second innings on 354 and bundled out the hosts for 227 to win by 198 runs and take revenge for their innings and 276-run humiliating defeat in the first Test at the same venue.

Sarel Erwee celebrates his century, Picture: Andrew Cornaga/
Sarel Erwee celebrates his century, Picture: Andrew Cornaga/

Dean Elgar’s Decision to Bat First Paid Off But He Feared It May Have Backfired

On February 25, Dean Elgar’s decision to bat first had surprised New Zealand as in the opening Test, the tourists could only manage 95 runs in the first innings, finally suffering an innings defeat.

“Luckily it paid off for us (the decision to bat first); it was something that might have backfired on us and I would have looked like an absolute idiot. But I’m one of those guys that is willing to live with the decisions I make for the side,” Dean Elgar was quoted as saying following the big win.

Dean Elgar was a pleased captain after South Africa defeated New Zealand by 198 runs in the second Test.

Dean Elgar file photo (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)
Dean Elgar file photo (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

“We’ve shown in the past that we’ve got a lot of characters within our unit and, ultimately, we needed characters to come out again and rise up and make a stand for us to try and level the series,” Dean Elgar said.

The Proteas’ decision to bat first on a seamer-friendly wicket wasn’t the only surprise of the second Test. They also played spinner Keshav Maharaj, who ultimately went on to grab four wickets in the Test, including a 3/75 in the second innings.

Kagiso Rabada:  It Was The Right Decision To Bat First And Play A Spinner

Pacer Kagiso Rabada, who snared 5/60 in the first innings and 3/46 in the second, said there was a marked difference between the wickets for the two Tests, although the matches were played at the same venue Hagley Oval.

On a pitch that had something in it for the quicks throughout the five days, Kagiso Rabada finished with eight wickets in the match, including his 11th career five-for and Marco Jansen with seven, while Keshav Maharaj, the only spinner playing across both XIs, took a decisive 3 for 75 in New Zealand’s second innings.

After taking a first-innings lead of 71, South Africa rode on wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne’s unbeaten 136 to pile up 354/9 (declared) in their second essay to set a target of 425 for the home team.

“This wicket in this Test match was a lot drier just looking at it with the naked eye, and it had a lot less grass on it. When you walked on it, the spikes almost sunk into it.”

“So, that tells you that it’s going to be a little bit slow and hopefully when the Test match moved forward the conditions would get drier and the footmarks would be created for Keshav (Maharaj) to exploit. That was the thinking and, in the end, it was the right decision (to bat first and play a spinner),” added Kagiso Rabada.

Kagiso Rabada's pace often has him the centre of attention AFP/Getty Images
Kagiso Rabada’s pace often has him the centre of attention AFP/Getty Images

“It was irritating that the rain had to come at that stage (final session, Day 5). I had an idea that the rain would just blow over, the clouds would blow over, but in the back of your head you’ve got that cynical thought that says ‘what if it stays?’.”

South Africa maintained their unbeaten series record over New Zealand, levelled the two-match series 1-1, and became the first team to win a match at the Hagley Oval after choosing to bat first. They set New Zealand a target of 426 and bowled them out for 227 to stage a remarkable comeback after losing the first match by an innings and 276 runs, their second-biggest defeat ever.

South Africa 364 (Erwee 108, Wagner 4-102, Henry 3-90) and 354 for 9 declared (Verreynne 136*, Rabada 47, Henry 2-81) beat New Zealand 293 (de Grandhomme 120*, Rabada 5-60, Jansen 4-98) and 227 (Conway 92, Rabada 3-46, Jansen 3-63) by 198 runs

Lungi Ngidi

Lungi Ngidi Ruled Out Of Second Test Match Against New Zealand

South Africa pacer Lungi Ngidi has been ruled out of the second Test match against New Zealand due to a back strain. He also missed the first test match in which South Africa faced a heavy innings thrashing by the hosts. The second Test will begin on Friday at Hagley Oval, Christchurch.

Ngidi played a key role in their series against India in January. Ngidi picked 15 wickets in that series with an average of 15. Without him, the proteas pace attack struggled big time in the first test match. Speaking to the media ahead of the second test match, captain Dean Elgar informed that Ngidi is far from getting a match fitness as he hadn’t bowled last week.

Lungi Ngidi Ruled Out Of Second Test Match Against New Zealand 1
Lungi Ngidi

“Lungi Ngidi has only been bowling off a short run-up”- Dean Elgar

Because he hasn’t been able to bowl last week, I don’t think his bowling loads are up to the standard of preparing for Test matches,” captain Dean Elgar told reporters.

He hasn’t been training with us, he’s only been bowling off a short run-up, which has been a bit of a setback for us. We know Lungi’s been a key figure within our bowling line-up. So it’s a bit disappointing that he’s in the situation that he’s in now,” he added.

Lungi Ngidi Ruled Out Of Second Test Match Against New Zealand 2
Dean Elgar

The visitors handed a Test debut to Glenton Stuurman but the 29-year couldn’t live up to expectations as he conceded 124 runs for one wicket. The 4-man pace attack consisting of Rabada, Marco Jansen, Duanne Olivier, and Stuurman conceded 482 runs to the hosts. And in return, they got bowled for 95 and 111.

Elgar admitted that the batting unit has been low in confidence but they are looking to bounce back strongly,

I’m sure there are guys who are a little bit low in confidence, especially from a batting point of view,” said Dean Elgar.

In the second Test match, New Zealand will be chasing a historic series win against the Proteas as they never won a Test series against them before. New Zealand is likely to go with the same XI. Though Trent Boult returned from paternity leave, he couldn’t give himself enough time in the nets to get ready for the match.

Also, read Sarandeep Singh Backed Rahul Dravid For His Comments On Wriddhiman Saha

Dean Elgar file photo (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

Sarel Erwee Likely To Bat At No. 3 In Absence Of Keegan Petersen, Hints Dean Elgar

South Africa Test captain Dean Elgar has given a hint that Sarel Erwee is likely to be slotted at no.3 as Keegan Petersen is unavailable for the 2-match series against New Zealand. On Wednesday Cricket South Africa released a statement that Keegan Petersen, who was ‘Player Of the Series’ in the series win against India, was tested positive for Covid-19 and won’t travel with the squad.

The two test match series between New Zealand and South Africa will begin on February 16 as both test matches are scheduled to play at Hagley Oval, Christchurch.

Sarel Erwee Likely To Bat At No. 3 In Absence Of Keegan Petersen, Hints Dean Elgar 3
Dean Elgar

Speaking in a press conference ahead of the tour, Dean Elgar said that it’s unfortunate that Petersen would miss out on the tour. Keegan Petersen scored 276 runs in 6 innings with an average of 46 which included 3 fifties against a high-quality Indian attack.

“We’ve become pretty good at that of late. It’s unfortunate that ‘KP’ is going to miss out on this trip; I’d love to have seen him build on what he started in the Indian series. But these are uncertain times and these kinds of curveballs come your way, and you just have to deal with them,” Dean Elgar said.

Zubayr Hamza has been named his replacement in the squad however Dean Elgar hinted that Sarel Erwee, who has been in terrific form for South Africa A and Dolphins, would get a go in the series.

Keegan Petersen holds the Player-of-the-Match and Series awards while Dean Elgar poses with the series trophy • Jan 14, 2022 © Getty Images
Keegan Petersen holds the Player-of-the-Match and Series awards while Dean Elgar poses with the series trophy • Jan 14, 2022. © Getty Images

“Pretty clear cut that Erwee and Hamza are the two guys who will be pushing for that No. 3 spot”- Dean Elgar

“Sarel Erwee has been our backup batter for quite some time. He’s had a few series now where he’s been carrying the drinks, and he’s been brilliant off the field. So I’d like to think he’s the guy who comes in. In saying that, Zubayr Hamza is another option. It’s pretty clear cut that Erwee and Hamza are the two guys who will be pushing for that No. 3 spot.” he added.

In the 3-match series against India A, Sarel Erwee was the leading run-scorer with 251 runs in 5 innings. Also in the domestic 4-day tournament, he scored 258 runs in 3 innings this season.

Meanwhile, Dean Elgar sounded quite frustrated when a series of questions were asked about coach Mark Boucher’s racism case.

“It’s been OK, but I think it takes away from the group everything that we’ve achieved. And for me that’s bullshit. So the minute you start talking about something that’s. I know it’s extremely relevant in the public eye and it is relevant for us, no doubt. But as a players’ group, we’ve achieved so much and that gets squashed by negativity in the media. And rightly so – it sells headlines,” he said.

Also read It’s Fair And Right Thing To Do – Pat Cummins On Cricket Australia’s Evaluation Of Justin Langer

Keegan Petersen holds the Player-of-the-Match and Series awards while Dean Elgar poses with the series trophy • Jan 14, 2022 © Getty Images
Keegan Petersen holds the Player-of-the-Match and Series awards while Dean Elgar poses with the series trophy • Jan 14, 2022 © Getty Images

Keegan Petersen Said Indian Bowling Attack The Most Challenging He Faced In His Short 5 Test Match Career

Keegan Petersen, the South African batsman has said that the Indian bowling attack was the most challenging he has ever come across in his cricket career so far.

The right-hander was the top run-scorer in the three-match Test series, scoring 276 runs at an average of 46.00. He was the only player to score more than three half-centuries, recording scores of 72, 82, and 62.

Keegan Petersen scored at a brisk pace Getty Images
Keegan Petersen scored at a brisk pace Getty Images

Keegan Petersen: Indian Bowling Attack Most Challenging

South Africa came from behind to win the Test series 2-1 and this victory may very well revive cricket in the country. Dean Elgar, the South African skipper played a gritty knock of 96 runs in the 2nd Test to guide South Africa to a 7-wicket win over India to level the series 1-1 before Keegan Petersen scored valuable fifties in both innings of the 3rd and final Test to see unfancied South Africa winning Test series without most of the star players.

“It hasn’t completely sunk in yet,” he said.

“I still can’t explain how it feels completely despite it being two days already. Myself, my family and everyone close to us are still trying to get over it somehow. It was a challenging series against one of the best bowling attacks in the world,” the official website of Cricket South Africa (CSA) quoted Keegan Petersen as saying.

South Africa's Dean Elgar celebrates with teammates and the trophy after winning the match and the series, Third Test - South Africa v India - Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town, South Africa - January 14, 2022 | Photo Credit: Reuters
South Africa’s Dean Elgar celebrates with teammates.  January 14, 2022, | Photo Credit: Reuters

“It was by far the most challenging bowling I have come across in my career, whether it’s been in first-class cricket or any form of cricket. It hasn’t been an easy introduction for me to international cricket, but I honestly wouldn’t have it any other way. My journey’s unique and it’s my story to tell as well,” he added.

The 28-year-old was named Player of the Series after his outstanding exploits with the bat against India.

Keegan Petersen Grateful To Have The Opportunity To Represent South Africa

Keegan Petersen, who has played only 5 Tests was deservingly the Man of the Match for the 3rd Test with scores of 72 and 82. He was Man of the Series too for being the top scorer with 276 runs.

“Whether I bat in the first couple of overs or whether I bat after 50 overs, I’m just grateful to have the opportunity to be there, playing amongst a group of guys who are also trying to start something new in South African cricket. We are also trying to tell a new story as a team together as well,” said Keegan Petersen.

“Deano as our captain, he’s going to, he has and he is going to achieve great things as well as a captain. He’s a brilliant leader and we wouldn’t want anyone else to lead us. The achievement for us as a squad, we know the chips were down and the odds were against us especially after the first game where we were beaten. It wasn’t a good scenario, but we had a couple of strong chats after the game looking at ways to bounce back,” he added.

Marco Jansen (Gallo)
Marco Jansen (Gallo)

Further talking about the series win, Petersen said: “It’s just our personalities and character as South Africans, even though we’re the underdogs, we always come back fighting. That’s just how we are and we showed that during this series. Hopefully, it carries on for years to come,” he added.

Keegan Petersen has so far amassed 320 runs averaging 35.56 after averaging 46 in the Test series against India. South Africa and India will now lock horns in three-match ODI series, beginning Wednesday in Paarl.

The left-arm seamer, Marco Jansen received his maiden call-up to the ODI squad, while seamer Anrich Nortje has been deemed unfit after not recovering from his hip injury. Wayne Parnell and Zubayr Hamza have retained their spots from its Netherlands ODI tour. Dwaine Pretorius, who recently had a good outing in the T20 World Cup 2021 in the UAE, returned to the squad alongside all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo.

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Virat Kohli | Photo Credit: AP
Virat Kohli | Photo Credit: AP

Virat Kohli Informed That He Was Stepping Down As Test Skipper In Dressing Room 24 Hours Before His Tweet

Virat Kohli, hours after India’s Test series loss against South Africa on Friday, had ended the post-match team meeting at the Newlands dressing room with an announcement and a request.

To the surprise of those present in the dressing room, Virat Kohli said that he had decided to step down as India’s Test captain. He also asked his teammates and the support staff to keep the news to themselves. Virat Kohli’s decision to retire comes after India was defeated by South Africa in the Cape Town Test by 7 wickets. The tourists slumped from taking a 1-0 lead to lose the series 2-1.

Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
Virat Kohli, Image Source: AP IMAGE

Virat Kohli Informed That He Was Stepping Down As Test Skipper In Dressing Room 24 Hours Before Tweet And Urged Teammates To Keep The News To Themselves

Virat Kohli on Saturday announced that he is stepping down as the captain of the Indian Test team. Last year, the 33-year-old had stepped down as the T20I captain and then he was removed as the ODI leader as the selectors wanted one captain for the white-ball format.

Those at the meeting said the captain said “I ask a small favour, please don’t share with anybody outside the dressing room”.

About 24 hours later, on Saturday evening, like so often in the past, Virat Kohli broke the news on social media Twitter. This marked the end of Virat Kohli’s journey as a skipper, as he had earlier relinquished T20I captaincy followed by the selectors’ decision to remove him from ODI leadership.

“It’s been 7 years of hard work, toil and relentless perseverance every day to take the team in the right direction. I’ve done the job with absolute honesty and left nothing out there. Everything has to come to a halt at some stage and for me as Test Captain of India, it’s now,” Kohli wrote in his Twitter post.

Sourav Ganguly and Virat Kohli.
Sourav Ganguly and Virat Kohli. (PTI)

At the post-match press conference, after India’s another Test series defeat against Proteas in Cape Town on Friday, Virat Kohli looked unusually downbeat. The wind of change was blowing in Indian cricket, with Rohit Sharma’s appointment as white-ball captain and his promotion to Test vice-captaincy.

Before going to South Africa, Virat Kohli had taken on the BCCI, openly contradicting Board President Sourav Ganguly on the captaincy issue. Later, chief selector Chetan Sharma appeared before the press and corroborated Sourav Ganguly’s version. Following Ravi Shastri’s departure as the Indian team head coach, Virat Kohli also had lost his biggest backer in the dressing-room.

His form, too, became a topic of debate of late and although he scored a brilliant 79 in the first innings of the third Test against the Proteas at Newlands, he has now gone 30 international innings without a century in any format. His last ton was in 2019 against Bangladesh in Tests.

But unlike his statement in September last year, when he spoke about giving up T20I captaincy to manage his workload, Virat Kohli’s post on Saturday didn’t touch upon any cricketing issues.

“There have been many ups and also some downs along the journey, but never has there been a lack of effort or lack of belief. I have always believed in giving my 120 percent in everything I do, and if I can’t do that, I know it’s not the right thing to do. I have absolute clarity in my heart and I cannot be dishonest to my team,” he wrote.

When Virat Kohli took full-time charge of the Test team, in Australia in 2014-15 after MS Dhoni’s shock decision to retire mid-series, India was languishing as low as seventh in the ICC rankings. From there to taking the team to No. 1 in the world rankings and staying there for five years had been a spectacular turnaround. Overhauling the fitness culture and forming a four-pronged pace attack that is capable of taking 20 wickets in any conditions, would be his biggest legacies as India captain.

Virat Kohli Retired As Most Successful Test Skipper With 40 Wins In 68 Tests

The 33-year-old led India in 68 games and won 40, becoming the country’s most successful Test captain in the process. He presided over India’s first-ever Test series win in Australia and led the team to a 2-1 lead in England last summer before the fifth Test was postponed due to a Covid-19 outbreak in the Indian camp.

Controversies followed him until his last Test as captain when South African skipper Dean Elgar’s DRS reprieve prompted Virat Kohli to take his frustration to the stump microphone. He was criticized for his on-field behaviour, but Virat Kohli was always like that, leading with passion, taking the aggression to the opponents, and wearing his heart on his sleeve.

Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab
Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab

As captain, he fell out with Anil Kumble when the latter was the head coach. Ravi Shastri was brought back upon his insistence and together they wrote a golden chapter in Indian cricket. Little wonder then that Virat Kohli’s post had a special mention for Ravi Shastri.

“To Ravi Bhai and the support group who were the engine behind this vehicle that moved us upwards in Test Cricket consistently, you all have played a massive role in bringing this vision to life,” he wrote.

Virat Kohli offered his heartfelt thanks to predecessor MS Dhoni also.

“Lastly, a big thank you to MS Dhoni who believed in me as a Captain and found me to be an able individual who could take Indian Cricket forward.”

Virat Kohli in his statement thanked the BCCI.

“I want to thank the BCCI for giving me the opportunity to lead my country for such a long period of time and more importantly to all the teammates who bought into the vision I had for the team from day one and never gave up in any situation. You guys have made this journey so memorable and beautiful.”

KL Rahul, the designated vice-captain, might win the race to be the next Test captain. Rohit Sharma’s long history of injuries might go against him. The disappointment of not being able to win a Test series in South Africa in two attempts (2017-18 and 2021-22) as captain and the personal form of not being able to score a Test hundred in 2 years may have cluttered his mind for long and made him take this decision.

Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab
Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab

Adam Gilchrist And Shane Warne React To Virat Kohli’s Stump Microphone Comments

Adam Gilchrist weighed in on the episode of Virat Kohli speaking on the stump microphone, saying that Virat Kohli’s frustration was ‘brewing’ until it reached a point of no return, while former legendary spinner Shane Warne condemned the India captain’s jibe.

Virat Kohli letting it rip on the stump microphone following the DRS episode that gave Dean Elgar a lifeline continues to receive a plethora of reactions. While Michael Vaughan said Virat Kohli needs to be fined or suspended for his outburst, former South Africa batsman Daryll Cullinan feels that the India captain has been getting away for his actions for far too long and wants him ‘severely punished’.

Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne spoke about Virat Kohli's antics. (Getty/Reuters)
Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne spoke about Virat Kohli’s antics. (Getty/Reuters)

Adam Gilchrist: Indian Skipper’s Frustration Was Building Or Brewing And Got To Breaking Point

Reactions continue to pour in from across the globe, most notably Down Under(Australia), where two of Australia’s greatest former cricketers and legends Shane Warner and Adam Gilchrist have given their take in the matter. Former Australia wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist weighed in on the episode, saying that the Indian skipper’s frustration was ‘brewing’ until it reached a point of no return.

Adam Gilchrist (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)
Adam Gilchrist (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

“That accusation there I am interested in Warnie; this seems a bit premeditated. This has been building or brewing and it has got to a breaking point. That accusation about filming teams shining the ball I am assuming it goes all the way back to that very ground when the Australians were caught out on camera,” said Adam Gilchrist.

South Africa skipper Dean Elgar was adjudged LBW on the field by the umpire Marais Erasmus, however, the left-hander decided to review it. The ball was hitting him in the line of the stumps, but it was going over the stumps which surprised everyone, including Marais Erasmus who shockingly looked at the replays and mouthed, “That is impossible.”

Shane Warne: Sometimes Frustration Overflows And One Can’t Take It Anymore

Shane Warne admitted that the delivery looked like hitting the stumps saying that is going on to smash halfway up middle though, there is no way that’s going over. The former leg-spinner, especially given the fact that he is the ‘captain of an international team’, followed it up by pointing out the frustration element which increased with time.

Shane Warne - Getty Images
Shane Warne – Getty Images

“Look it is an interesting one, I am not sure that should be happening from a captain of an international team. But sometimes frustration overflows, you just get so frustrated and that’s why I said I wonder if that has happened three or four times through the series, and that was like okay that is enough now we can’t have it anymore,” said Warne.

Frustrated by the same, Virat Kohli went up to the stumps and shouted, “Focus on your team as well when they shine the ball eh, not just the opposition. Trying to catch people all the time.” KL Rahul joined and was heard in the background saying, “It’s the whole country against 11 guys.” While the bowler off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin returning to his bowling mark said, “You should find better ways to win, SuperSport.”

Virat Kohli asking the host broadcaster to roll cameras on the home team while shining the ball reminded many of the ball-tampering scandal (2018 Sandpaper Gate) that hit Australian cricket in 2018 on the South Africa tour itself. Virat Kohli is an international skipper and venting out frustrations of that kind was unacceptable, according to Shane Warne who also added that it was a one-off incident and revealed he won’t take more accusations.

The likes of Gautam Gambhir, Shreevats Goswami, and Morne Morkel slammed the Indian cricket captain for his behaviour. India lost the third Test match by seven wickets.

Dean Elgar file photo (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

Dean Elgar Survived An LBW Review As Hawkeye Showed Ball Missing The Stumps; Human Error Possible But Can’t Be Manipulated Says Veteran Broadcaster

Dean Elgar was the batter who survived a review late on the third day when he was given out lbw off Ravichandran Ashwin by Marais Erasmus to a delivery that drifted in from around the stumps and struck in front of the middle stump, below the knee roll. Dean Elgar sent the decision upstairs and ball-tracking showed the ball would have gone over the stumps.

Hemant Buch, a professional with experience of working on more than 100 Tests, feels chances of foul play are remote even though some technicians at work may differ in skill level, in light of the controversy around Dean Elgar’s ‘non-dismissal’. During the final session of the third day of the deciding Test in Cape Town, led by captain Virat Kohli, the Indian players fired a barrage of opinions at host broadcasters SuperSport.

Virat Kohli And Dean Elgar DRS (Photo: Twitter)
Virat Kohli And Dean Elgar DRS (Photo: Twitter)

Dean Elgar Reviewed The LBW Decision Correctly As The Ball Went Over The Stumps Which Enraged Indians

The players let their displeasure known over three key issues: the use of technology, in particular, the ball-tracking system that they alleged was manipulated; the use of stump-mics; and the conduct of the SuperSport crew.

Virat Kohli said: “Don’t hit them on the pads, boys. Either stumps or caught behind, that’s it. Real experts sitting in the DRS column, boys… couldn’t believe they gave me out in the first match. Different ball been shown for tracking, lads.”

Ravichandran Ashwin believed he had trapped Dean Elgar in front of the stumps and umpire Marais Erasmus, too, raised his finger. However, after the South African skipper Dean Elgar reviewed the decision, the tracking system showed the ball was going over the stumps.

The decision of turning down LBW of Dean Elgar enraged the Indians and even Marais Erasmus was caught muttering, ‘that is impossible.’ India dismissed Dean Elgar nine overs later, at the close of play.

Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab
Virat Kohli’s stump-mic comments have attracted plenty of criticism | Screengrab

Hemant Buch said while a human error is possible, it is highly unlikely that the ball-tracking visuals could be manipulated, as implied by the India captain. The ball-tracking technology is supplied by Hawk-Eye, one of the two vendors approved by the ICC. Six cameras are used for this system and there are five people employed by Hawk-Eye to work on the broadcast.

“There are people of varying skill levels and varying degrees of experience working for the company. Sometimes, you find it is taking more time in bringing up the track, sometimes it happens very quickly. Skill levels differ,” Buch said.

Because of the human intervention involved in the tracking system, there is scope for errors. All the data collected is provided to the ICC after the match.

“But you have to remember that you are talking about one or two decisions in the entire series which are wrong with Hawk-Eye. There are so many checks and balances that if it (manipulation) happens, they’ll be caught out,” Buch added.

Virat Kohli said: “I wonder if the stump mic catches all this chatter here, huh?”

For the second time in the match, Virat Kohli spoke angrily about stump mics. Even on Day 2 of the Test, Virat Kohli was heard saying, ‘stump mics are way too loud’ when India was bowling, implying selective broadcast done by SuperSport, to put increased attention on what the visitors say on the field.

The increasing use of stump mics has been a widely debated topic, especially among current and former cricketers who feel it could lead to players getting fined for saying things in the heat of the moment. Usually, audio engineers turn the faders up when a ball is bowled to capture the sound effects of the game: the bowler’s run-up, the batsman taking guard, the ball hitting the bat, or an appeal.

During the period between deliveries and overs, the fader is turned down. In South Africa, however, they are often kept on for longer durations. In 2018, Australia had requested SuperSport and match officials to turn down the mics when the ball was dead although it was ignored by the broadcasters.

Virat Kohli Urged Teammates To Focus While Shining The Ball Referring To 2018 Sandpaper Gate Ball-Tampering Scandal During Australia’s Tour To South Africa

Hemant Buch, too, felt that compared to the Ashes, being played simultaneously, ‘you hear everything that’s happening’ on the field in South Africa. ICC rules allow stump mics to be broadcast at all times, but Hemant Buch said the volume can be increased only at certain times when the ball is dead because you don’t want anything abusive to go out.

A director, who can listen to everything that’s said on the field, can increase the volume if he comes across interesting banter – as Hemant Buch did recently when West Indies wicketkeeper Joshua da Silva tried to sledge Sri Lanka’s Charith Asalanka during the second Test last month.

“I think the Indians feel that stump mics are deliberately kept high when they are bowling,” Buch said. “I am not sure if that’s 100 percent accurate, but it is apparently what they feel.”

Virat Kohli said: “Focus on your team as well when they shine the ball. Not just the opposition, trying to catch people all the time.”

Cameron Bancroft and Steve Smith with the two umpires During 2018 Ball tampering Scandal [Image-Getty]
Cameron Bancroft and Steve Smith with the two umpires During 2018 Ball-tampering Scandal [Image-Getty]
It was a clear reference to the 2018 Sandpaper-gate scandal when Australian players were caught tampering with the ball by the cameras that constantly followed them. Virat Kohli’s comments showed he felt his team, too, was being put under constant scrutiny and were placed by the broadcasters under the microphone – to throw them off guard.

During Australia’s tour to South Africa in 2018, there were suggestions that SuperSport was ‘targeting the Australians, looking for ways the tourists were possibly manipulating the ball’. Indian cricketers felt they were targeted with the use of stump mics and that the technology was being used against them.

“Find better ways to win SuperSport,” Ravichandran Ashwin was heard saying.

The anger over the review of Dean Elgar, however, was misplaced. SuperSport, as they clarified in a statement, isn’t responsible for the technology.

The broadcaster said: “SuperSport notes comments made by certain members of the Indian cricket team. Hawk-Eye is an independent service provider, approved by the ICC and their technology has been accepted for many years as an integral part of DRS.”

Dean Elgar being given not out led to tempers fraying in the Indian camp with skipper Virat Kohli along with his deputy KL Rahul and senior offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin mocking the South African broadcasters ‘SuperSport’ on the stump microphone.

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