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Hey Virat! Mahi Is Watching, Brother!

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Kolkata: There is something idiosyncratic about Indian cricket. If your accomplishments take you places, sudden or brief disappointments pull you down before fans.

It is an age-old phenomenon and we seem to religiously adhere to it. Now, stories doing the rounds indicate that Virat Kohli’s future at the helm in the truncated versions of the game could be numbered and it hinges on his performance as a leader in the upcoming ICCT20. Appalling and disgusting, to say the least!

Does this mean, if Kohli’s India even lose the finals by a whisker, the skipper would be stripped of his job? News reports like the BCCI top brass being peeved at Kohli’s way of leading the side, do not augur well for the team’s prospects in a heavyweight tournament like the World Cup, make no mistake.

Now there are reports flying around that come what may, Kohli would step down as skipper in white ball games after the T20 World Cup. We would not endorse if at all he takes the extreme step.

Now, what is the skipper’s fault? The irrational logic is his failure to lay his hands on an ICC Trophy. Is that so? Strange and absurd argument that should be nipped in the bud. If we are to buy such conjectures, then on the same ground, Sourav Ganguly should never be hailed as a successful leader. MS Dhoni is pushed up the pedestal for having won India three ICC trophies. However, do we ever delve into the reason why his efforts were a damp squib in Test matches outside the sub-continent? We dare not since the Jharkhand guy’s name is etched in our hearts because of his track record as a leader in tournaments held under the aegis of the ICC.

Coming back to Kohli, he is India’s most successful Test captain both at home and abroad – he has marshalled his resources with perfection outside the sub-continent as well across formats, but hold on guys! He is bereft of an ICC triumph, so if the ‘dismal’ run continues in the prestigious tournament coming up next month, he must be ousted and replaced by Rohit Sharma.

Well, we tend to override the fact that it is one match that can make the difference – the 2017 Champions Trophy final, the 2019 World Cup semi-final and the 2021 World Test Championship grand finale – all the hard work before is rebuffed due to one bad day in office. Unlucky Kohli!

But let’s not be shocked out of our slumber- this is the way we treat our heroes – Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev, Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and even Dhoni to a certain extent, have been vilified and put up the gallows for a very few ordinary fares.

A word or two for some ex-cricketers who eke out a living out of incendiary statements that can have serious repercussions on the team. One such ‘stalwart’ whose international career tanked over his alleged involvement in match fixing, wonders if Dhoni’s appointment as mentor in the ICCT20 is a vindication of the ineptitude of the Kohli-Ravi Shastri (coach) duo to adopt strategies beneficial for the team. So, here comes Dhoni aka Mahi to set the house in order.

No wonder, he was trending for his flippant remark. But don’t be aghast if more such uncanny utterances emerge in the days to come.

Do not renounce the fact that we live in a democratic country where the media (social, especially) gives you opportunities on a platter to air your views. So, who is stopping you from making the most of it?

Poor Kohli – at a time when he should be celebrating his team’s astounding turnaround against all odds in the Test series against England, he finds himself under stringent vigil as he gets ready for the IPL. And God forbade, if his Royal Challengers Bangalore ends up on a low, there would surely be calls for his head before the ICCT20.

It’s hilarious and admonishable, but it also happens only in India!

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