Virat Kohli led Royal Challengers Bangalore got eliminated from the tournament on Friday. Meanwhile, former India opener and two-time IPL champion skipper Gautam Gambhir feels that RCB needs a new leader.
He told ESPNcricinfo that Kohli’s name as a leader shouldn’t be taken alongside the most successful captains of the IPL, that is, MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma.
Speaking on Kohli’s removal as a captain of RCB, Gambhir told ‘ESPNCricinfo’, “100 per cent, because the problem is about accountability. Eight years into the tournament (without a trophy), eight years is a long time.
“Tell me any other captain…forget about the captain, tell me any other player who would have got eight years and wouldn’t have won the title and would have still continued with it.
“So it has to be accountability,” Gambhir added.
At the same time, Gambhir also feels that Virat Kohli should come up and take responsibility.
“…but somewhere down the line, he needs to put his hand up and say, ‘yes, I am responsible. I am accountable’.”
Gambhir also took the example of off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who led Kings XI Punjab for two years but couldn’t deliver great results, so he was removed by the franchise.
“Eight years is a long, long time. Look at what happened to R Ashwin. Two years of captaincy (for the Kings XI Punjab), he couldn’t deliver and he was removed.”
Gambhir further said that it is not at all acceptable to compare Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni with Virat Kohli. Rohit Sharma has lifted the trophy four times MS Dhoni won the title three times.
“We talk about MS Dhoni, we talk about Rohit Sharma, we talk about Virat Kohli…not at all. Dhoni has won three (IPL) titles, Rohit Sharma has won four titles, and that’s the reason they’ve captained for such a long time because they’ve delivered.
“I’m sure if Rohit Sharma wouldn’t have delivered for eight years, he would have been removed as well. There should not be different yardsticks for different people.”
“You’re the leader, you’re the captain. When you get the credit, you should take the criticism as well.”
RCB Actually Never Deserved to Qualify For The Playoffs: Gautam Gambhir
Gambhir even said that Virat Kohli led side didn’t even deserve to qualify for the playoffs after four consecutive losses.
“You can keep saying ‘we qualified for the playoffs and we deserved to qualify for the playoffs’, absolutely not. RCB actually never deserved to qualify for the playoffs.”
He further said that RCB is all about Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.
“And then they should have had a squad, probably if Virat wanted to open, they should have picked a middle-order batter in the auction. But again it was all about Virat and AB (de Villiers).”
“Imagine if AB would have had a bad season, tell me what would have happened to RCB,” Gambhir said.
“He was the one who actually won them two or three games out of seven. I don’t think as a unit they’ve done anything different from what they did last year. It’s exactly the same this year as well.
“Only because you’ve qualified for the playoffs, just because of one individual’s absolute brilliance, it doesn’t make you a strong contender to win the IPL.”