The Financial Express

The Rohit Sharma era begins for India's T20 side

Rohit Sharma pose with the trophy with Tim Southee as he starts his journey as India's T20 captain. Photo: ESPNcricinfo Rohit Sharma pose with the trophy with Tim Southee as he starts his journey as India's T20 captain. Photo: ESPNcricinfo

As per an announcement made before the T20 World Cup, Virat Kohli stepped down from the skipper's role for the shortest version of the game. 

India's failure in the super 12 stage of the World Cup marked a melancholic ending to Kohli’s journey as a T20 captain. 

However, another veteran of the team, Rohit Sharma has received the mantle from his counterpart and his assignment starts with the T20 series against the Kiwis immediately after the T20 World Cup. 

Leading the team is nothing unfamiliar to Rohit Sharma. In absence of Kohli, Rohit already led the Indian T20 side for 19 matches and won 15 of them. He also had 2 centuries while captaining. 

As a batter, he scored 3038 runs with a fine strike rate of 139.61. His 116 T20 appearances is the highest by any Indian cricketer in this format. This number shows the potential of Rohit in this version of the game. 

In ODI, Rohit led the men in blue in 10 games and won 8 of them. These numbers are proof of Rohit's capability and effectiveness in absence of Kohli. He was serving as the vice-captain during the whole tenure of his predecessor.

In IPL, Rohit is ahead of legendary former Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni by winning 5 titles for Mumbai Indians from 2013 to 2021. He led Mumbai in 129 matches and won 75 of them. 

However, Kohli hasn't won a single title yet in this franchise-based league. This success definitely puts Rohit ahead in terms of leadership in the shortest format of the game. Rohit got the young, shining star KL Rahul as his deputy for the home series that starts today. 

Both Rohit and Rahul are in good touch in the limited over format. They combinedly scored 1368 runs as an opening pair in the T20 format. Along with batting, this pair needs to step up as leaders to turn things around for India. 

Virat Kohli's departure from T20 captaincy without a major ICC trophy is certainly an unwanted thing for cricket fans. However, he will continue to lead the ODI and test sides and fans can still hope for leader Kohli to win something.

On the other hand, with another T20 World Cup waiting to be held next year, India will hope that Rohit Sharma will replicate his captaincy success for Mumbai Indians.

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