'No surprise': Sunil Gavaskar reacts as Rohit Sharma replaces Virat Kohli as India's Test captain

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Updated: Feb 19, 2022, 09:32 PM(IST)

Rohit Sharma has replaced Virat Kohli as India's new Test captain. Photograph:( AFP )

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The legendary Sunil Gavaskar said it was no surprise as selectors on Saturday named Rohit Sharma as India's Test captain after Virat Kohli's departure.

The legendary Sunil Gavaskar has backed Chetan Sharma-led national selection panel's decision to appoint Rohit Sharma as the captain of the Indian Test team. Rohit will replace Virat Kohli as the new skipper of the Indian team in the longest format and will take charge for the first time in the upcoming two-match series against Sri Lanka at home.

Rohit had earlier replaced Kohli as India's captain in T20Is and ODIs last year and has now become the country's leader across all formats of the game. Gavaskar said he is not at all surprised by the selectors' decision as Rohit was the obvious choice for captaincy if his fitness and workload is not an issue going forward.

"The guy who is a certainty in all three formats – when the selection committee sits down and think of who are the certainties, then Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli’s names will come up. And between them, Kohli is not doing captaincy, so it had to be Rohit Sharma. There was no surprise there," Gavaskar said on Sports Tak.

"The way he has handled the team. The way players are getting clarity. I won’t say there wasn’t clarity earlier. That would be wrong to say as I was not in the dressing room, so I don’t know. But from the way he speaks, it seems like the players know their roles. And they know what the team expects from them and what the captain expects from them," added the batting legend.

While Rohit is the most successful captain in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL) having led Mumbai Indians to a record five titles, he has also proven his leadership credentials in international cricket. He has been exceptional for India as captain and has also led the team to some memorable wins.

Also Read: Chief selector Chetan Sharma explains reason behind dropping Pujara, Rahane from India's Test squad

Gavaskar, who had himself suggested Rishabh Pant's name as a potential replacement for Kohli as the new Test captain of the Indian team, said his statement was keeping Rohit's fitness in mind. However, the former India captain insisted nobody else could have been considered if Rohit can remain totally fit going forward.

"Rishabh Pant’s name had come up because we didn’t know about Rohit Sharma’s fitness. But if he is completely fit, no one else can be the captain for all three formats. It was the correct decision," said Gavaskar.

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