Sunil Gavaskar feels that Rohit Sharma is “absolutely ready” to lead Team India in T20Is. However, he also warned that Sharma’s IPL success doesn’t necessarily bring him success at the international level.
Sharma was named India’s T20I captain for the home series against New Zealand, starting November 17, with KL Rahul his deputy. Sharma’s appointment as the T20I skipper after Virat Kohli stepped down from the role was predicted, considering he was the vice-captain and has won 5 IPL titles for Mumbai Indians.
“Rohit Sharma is absolutely ready to carry the baton forward. It is a new beginning for Indian T20 cricket under the leadership of Rohit,” Sunil Gavaskar told India Today.
Sunil Gavaskar, though, reckons Sharma’s unmatched IPL record doe not guarantee titles for India as well.
“Generally, a captain is only as good as his team. I know Rohit has won five IPL trophies under his captaincy but leading a national team is completely different to leading your state team or franchise.
“Just like a good first-class cricketer, he doesn’t necessarily turn out to be a great international cricketer. It goes to the captains also, no matter how many titles you have won for your state team or franchise, it doesn’t guarantee success at the international level,” the legendary opener added.
KL Rahul has been marked as a future leader: Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar isn’t surprised by KL Rahul’s being promoted to the vice-captain role. He pointed out that Rahul has been Punjab Kings’ captain for the last two IPL seasons and is also a crucial part of all three format sides. Hence, the 72-year-old feels Rahul is the future captain in the eyes of the selectors.
“KL Rahul has been marked as a future leader by the selectors. He has been the captain of Punjab Kings in the IPL and, above all, he plays in all 3 formats for India. I think Rahul playing in all three formats is the reason why he has been elevated to the role of vice-captain,” the commentator asserted.
The three T20Is against New Zealand will be played in Jaipur (November 17), Ranchi (November 19) and Kolkata (November 21), followed by Tests in Kanpur (November 25-29) and Mumbai (December 3-7).