Former South Africa pacer Dale Steyn had a different view point on Virat Kohli’s decision to step down as India’s Test captain. While many experts and former cricketers were “surprised” with Kohli’s unexpected announcement a day after India’s 1-2 defeat to South Africa in the three-match Test series, Steyn said it might just help Kohli to come out as a better player. The former Proteas pace spearhead said Kohli’s decision probably had a lot to do with demands of staying away from family for a long duration inside a bio-bubble.
“Maybe these bio-bubbles and all had a role in it. I mean it really boils down to family for somebody like Virat. He’s got a young family right now,” Steyn told Star Sports on Wednesday.
Steyn, who played a lot of cricket both with and against Kohli, said the pressure of captaining a side like India can become tougher as you start reaching a certain point in your career.
“Captaincy is a selfless thing. We all have to focus on ourselves to provide the best for the team but the moment you bring other people into your family like your wife, your children the other things don’t matter too much. Now that Virat has relinquished captaincy, he will focus more on his family and more on his batting. You might even see a better Virat Kohli. He hasn’t scored an international hundred for a while,” Steyn added.
The 33-year-old was once again looking good but failed to get to the three-figure mark in the first ODI against South Africa in Paarl, which the hosts won by 31 runs. India were on course till Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan (79) were at the crease but once their partnership was broken, it all went downhill for the visitors. Kohli, in his first outing only as a batter in five years, scored 52 off 63 balls.
Earlier, Kohli, India’s most successful Test captain, decided to quit as the leader after leading India in 68 Tests and winning 40 of those.
Under Kohli’s leadership, India have reached many highs including achieving the No.1 ranking and staying on top of the table for quite some time, two series wins in Australia, reaching the WTC final and a spotless record at home – India have not lost a Test series under Kohli’s leadership at home.
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