Virat Kohli scored a knockout of 51 runs off 63 balls in the opening ODI against South Africa.© AFP
Virat Kohli played his first game as a former captain of the Indian cricket team on Wednesday in a 31-point loss to South Africa in the first ODI in Paarl. Kohli played a fine 51-run knockout, but failed to prevent a defeat for his side. With new white-ball skipper Rohit Sharma out of the tour due to injury, stand-in captain KL Rahul started the ODI series on the wrong note with Wednesday’s loss. Former Pakistani captain Salman Butt said the “energy” Kohli brings to the side as captain was lacking in the opening ODI.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Butt also had a hilarious medical analogy of his own to describe the recent changes in the Indian cricket team, including Kohli’s departure as captain.
When asked by a fan if the BCCI was trying to fix something that wasn’t broken in the first place, Butt said that “there are some doctors who have to give you medicine, even if you’re completely fine”.
“Today there wasn’t the same kind of vibe or energy that Virat usually brings when he’s the captain. This happens to some people – their vibe is different when they’re captain. It wasn’t very impressive – the energy a captain should show was not visible here. You have to keep trying and guessing the opposition, that was not visible from KL Rahul here,” said Butt.
Speaking about the changes to the team, including captaincy, the former Pakistani captain said: “There are doctors who have to give you medicine even if you are completely fine. So when that doctor comes you will get some medicine. So I think this one of those unfortunate reasons is where for no reason everything seems upset.”
Butt added that his suggestion for improving India’s performance would be that Rahul drop the order.
“The immediate remedy for this I think is that KL Rahul keeps the wickets and bat in his usual position in ODIs. They can add an extra batter higher in the ranks and add a real fast bowler instead of Bhuvneshwar (Kumar). That will take longer … your batting order – someone in the highest order who can put pressure on the opposition and then your middle order will have a lot of experience,” he said.
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