“Once Rohit was injured, I thought Virat would captain,” Shastri told ESPNcricinfo on the Ravi & Raunak show. “If I was still there – I’m sure Rahul [Dravid] might have done the same thing, I have not spoken to him – I would’ve recommended to the board that it’s only fair he leads because he was captain of the team that was leading 2-1 in the series and probably could have got the best [out of the team].”
Kohli is currently leading Royal Challengers Bangalore as a stand-in captain at IPL 2023 as Faf du Plessis nurses a rib injury that has limited his participation only as a batter. Kohli has embraced leadership again, insisting it’s “nothing I’m not used to”.
Shastri said Kohli was looking “damn chilled” and “relaxed” at IPL 2023. He currently sits second on the run charts behind du Plessis.
“He’s in a very good space, enjoying his cricket,” Shastri said. “That’s the feeling I got as opposed to the last year when we were sitting and discussing does he need a break, does he not need a break. He seemed to have the burden of the whole world on his shoulders.
“Now it’s refreshing. the enthusiasm, passionate energy and enjoyment have come back, which for me was the best thing to see. Runs you might or might not get but when you see someone, and the passion, enjoyment and drive is back again, it’s good.”
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