I was considered a failed captain, but I never judged myself: Kohli on not winning ICC trophies as India skipper


Talismanic India batter Virat Kohli has said that he was considered a ‘failed captain’ for India due to not winning any ICC trophy during his leadership tenure. But at the same time, he stated that he will not judge himself from that point of view.

Kohli is India’s most successful Test captain, leading the side to 40 victories, including holding on to the top-ranked spot in the rankings for 42 months. Apart from winning 65 ODIs and 30 T20Is as captain, what has been absent from Kohli’s achievement as an Indian skipper has been a global trophy.

Under his leadership, India became runners-up in the 2017 Champions Trophy, and the 2021 World Test Championship final, apart from reaching the semifinals of the 2019 ODI World Cup, and not reaching the last four stages in the 2021 Men’s T20 World Cup.

“You play to win tournaments, but a lot was made of it, to be honest. I captained the Champions Trophy 2017, I captained the 2019 World Cup, I captained Test Championship 2021, so after three ICC tournaments already I was..”

“I mean we lost the last T20 World Cup (2021), we didn’t qualify (for the semi-finals). We reached the finals of the 2017 Champions Trophy, semis of (the 2019) World Cup, and final of the (2021) World Test Championship and I was considered a failed captain.”

“Look, I never judged myself from that point of view. What we ended up achieving as a team and as a cultural change for me will always be a matter of pride. A tournament happens for a certain period of time, but a culture happens over a long period of time. For that, you need consistency, for that you need more character than just winning tournaments,” said Kohli in the latest episode of the RCB Podcast.

Kohli then mentioned that he was grateful to have won numerous accomplishments as a player, and insists on looking at what went right, instead of what went wrong in his playing career.

“I have won a World Cup (2011) as a player, and a Champions Trophy (2013) as a player. I have been part of a team that has won five Test maces. If you look at it from that point of view, there have been people who have never won the World Cup. I am always grateful for what I have.”

“I was lucky enough to be part of the team (in 2011), to be honest. And what led to my selection was also amazing. I had a run of great scores and I ended up being on the team. I never expected it to happen. When things are meant to be, they are meant to be. There were people in the team, such as Sachin Tendulkar – who was playing his sixth World Cup. And I was able to be a part of the team the first time, and be a part of the winning side.”

“If I had to look at what’s gone wrong in my career, I look at what’s gone right and I am grateful for that. I am not mad about my trophy cabinet being full. To be, that has always been a by-product of how you conduct yourself, the kind of discipline you have, and how you are striving towards excellence on a daily basis, and I feel I have been very honest about that aspect of the game,” he concluded.


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