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The way Kohli prioritised Test cricket, was “great to witness.” : Ricky ponting

Given his Test record, he can be very proud of what he has accomplished as captain

Achievements as a Test captain, particularly in terms of how he prioritised the longest format of cricket in the era of T20 cricket. One of the biggest success stories in Indian cricket, according to Ponting, is what Kohli accomplished with India, emphasising overseas Test wins.

Virat Kohli was India’s most successful Test captain during his seven-year tenure, winning 40 out of 68 Tests and led the team to the No. 1 ranking and the first World Test Championship final. Under Kohli, India has never lost a Test series at home and has won their first-ever series in Australia, leading England 2-1 in an unfinished series.

Virat Kohli’s decision to step down as Test captain surprised nearly everyone in the cricket world, with Ricky Ponting being the most surprised of all because of a conversation the two had during the first half of IPL 2021, in which Kohli discussed possibly relinquishing the white-ball captaincy but seemed adamant about continuing to lead in Test cricket.


“Yes, it actually did (come as a surprise). The major reason for this is that during the first half of the last IPL, I had a good conversation with Virat Kohli “In an interview with Isa Guha on ICC Review, a new show inaugurated this week by ICC, Ponting stated. “He was talking about going away from white-ball cricket at the time, and how eager he was to stay as Test match captain. As you can see, he adored and treasured that post. Clearly, the Indian Test squad had accomplished a great deal while he was in charge. I was completely taken aback when I heard that.”When I heard that, I was really taken aback.”
Kohli resigned after captaining India in 68 Tests, 40 of which he won, the most by any Indian captain. For the majority of his tenure, the team he headed was ranked No. 1, an accomplishment that Ponting termed as “staggering” and bigger than his own as Australia captain. It’s arguably more of a colossal achievement for India than it was for the United States, according to Ponting. When I took over, I was captaining a team that had long been the best in the world of cricket. Before Virat, India’s success was based on winning a lot of games at home while losing a lot of games abroad. The thing that improved the most was India winning a few more games outside of India, and that’s something that he and the rest of the team are proud of.
“The other thing is that when Virat took over, the BCCI put a lot of emphasis on Test cricket, and I think a lot of that has come from him as well – to focus more on Test cricket and win more games at home and away.” He may be very pleased of what he has accomplished in this job.
“They (India) were a very competitive squad while he was captain. They most likely ascended to world rankings that many people did not believe were attainable. For the past four or five years, they’ve had perhaps one of the top fast-bowling attacks in international cricket. No one could have predicted it, and I believe a large part of it is due to what Virat brought to the team once he became the captain.”
Ponting also discussed his feelings on split-captaincy. “In an ideal world,” Ponting added, “every playing group would want the same voice and the same leader around their various formats.” “However, whether that person is capable of playing every game throughout the calendar year… The other difficulty that arises is that World Cups and major Test series are held virtually every year now. And I suppose that’s the difficulty that’s being discussed in terms of coaching roles as well.
“Another consideration with captaincy is that there are unlikely to be many players in international cricket who will be selected in their country’s top squad in all three formats. Rohit Sharma is most likely to fall under this category. For India, KL Rahul most likely falls into that bracket as well. As I have stated, in an ideal scenario for me – and this may be a bit old-school – I still believe that if you can manage the one captain, that is great.”