India vs South Africa: Will Virat Kohli change plans and play ODIs in South Africa? | Cricket News – Times of India

MUMBAI: The Indian cricket board (BCCI) is looking at all possible ways to ensure Virat Kohli stays back in South Africa in January next year to play the three One-day Internationals after the Test series.
While it can be confirmed that Kohli indeed communicated to the BCCI that he wanted a break during the One-dayers – this, the board says, happened before the ODI captaincy changed hands – the bigger task at hand for them right now is to send out a clear message that “all is well within the Indian team”.
“Sometimes, it’s not just about doing the right thing but also about being seen as doing the right thing,” say those tracking developments.

The onus is entirely on Kohli as he gets ready to address the media on Wednesday, the eve of the team’s departure to South Africa. The former white-ball captain, it is learnt, wanted the break for ‘personal reasons’, which have nothing to do with rumours of him being upset with the captaincy change.

Virat Kohli (AFP Photo)
Kohli, for the record, has time and again spoken warmly about Sharma as a teammate and Sharma, once again, reciprocated that sentiment when he spoke to the BCCI’s official website on Monday. “Five years that he (Kohli) led the team, he led from the front every time, and there was clear grit and determination to win every game. I have played a lot under him, and I have enjoyed each and every moment, still continue to do that,” Sharma said.
The BCCI certainly wants this camaraderie to show on the field too, one that will not only bring a lot of positivity into the new Team India set-up but also put all unnecessary controversies to rest.
“We will try and see what can be done here that is best from the team’s perspective,” a senior BCCI functionary said when asked if Kohli would agree to a change in plans and stay back for the One-dayers.
TOI had reported on Tuesday that Kohli requested for a break during the ODIs in South Africa. Speaking to news channels on Tuesday afternoon, BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal also confirmed the same. Dhumal said “Kohli had made the request (for a break) long before Sharma was announced as captain”.
While every cricketer is welcome to take a break from what is otherwise a very hectic schedule round the year, the BCCI is also of the thought that Kohli taking a break right now may perhaps “not send across the right message”.
BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, who said in an official statement on Sunday that he had “personally spoken to Kohli” and “so did the chairman of selectors” asking him not to step down from T20 captaincy, hasn’t shared his views yet on Kohli seeking a break from the ODIs.

Virat Kohli and Sourav Ganguly (BCCI Photo)
He also added in the statement that the BCCI had requested Kohli “to not step down as T20 skipper but obviously, he did not agree”.
Kohli’s views on the matter haven’t been heard yet except the social media post that he came out with on September 16, announcing that he was stepping down as T20 captain but will continue leading the team in Tests and the ODIs.
“The BCCI had maintained throughout that it would not allow split captaincy in white-ball cricket and it is clear from Ganguly’s statement that Kohli was told about it. He himself said it,” say those tracking developments.

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