4 things which are wrong about Virat Kohli's captaincy
India have lost yet another Test series, outside the subcontinent. The number one Test side, in the world, trail England 1-3 in the ongoing 5-match series. With the next big assignment against Australia at the end of the year, Indian skipper Virat Kohli has plenty to chew upon. At times, his captaincy has been a shade below-par. Here we look at the reasons.
Kohli never gets the starting XI right
The weakest point in Kohli's captaincy has been his Playing XI. There are numerous examples, where Kohli has messed up in this regard. In the first two Tests, against South Africa, he dropped Ajinkya Rahane. In the second Test at Lord's against England, he dropped Umesh Yadav. Notably, Umesh's replacement was Kuldeep and the left-arm mystery spinner didn't have any say in the match.
Kohli doesn't read the pitch well
As far as reading the pitch was concerned, Kohli got it all wrong at Lord's. Unfortunately, this has been a pattern. Earlier, in 2018, he dropped Bhuvi for the second Test against Proteas on a pitch which could have assisted his style. Looking at the way Moeen Ali bowled in the Southampton Test, India should have included Jadeja. He needs to sort this out.
Bowling changes at times have been questionable
Not always, but several times, Kohli's bowling changes have been questionable. The decision to persist with Ashwin, in fourth Test, highlights this issue. Instead, if he would have used the in-form Shami, the scorecard might have read differently. Further, he has never utilized Hardik Pandya, as a bowler, to his fullest capabilities. In simple terms, he is way too rigid about his strategies.
No able leadership to guide Kohli
This is more about Ravi Shastri than Kohli. Every leader needs a mentor, who can guide him during difficult times. India's head coach has failed miserably in this regard. Shastri looks like a die-hard Kohli fan rather than someone who can critically analyze his flaws.
Kohli is still India's best hope
Everything said and done, Virat Kohli is still one of the best captains India have ever had. His hunger to win has changed the team's mentality. Given India's batting line-up has been fragile, credit goes to Kohli that they have won matches in England and South Africa. If he can tweak his captaincy, India have the ability to become the best travelling side.