Virat Kohli must focus on South Africa tour: Kapil Dev on BCCI-Kohli rift
- Kapil Dev said pointing fingers against anybody is not good
- Virat Kohli on Wednesday held a press conference after losing the ODI captaincy
- Team India departed on Thursday for South Africa for the Test series, starting on January 26
Kapil Dev, the 1983 World Cup-winning captain of India, said Virat Kohli’s statements that exposed his difference with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) after he lost ODI captaincy were mistimed as they created a distasteful controversy just ahead of India’s tour of South Africa. Kohli had announced in September that he would step down from T20I captaincy after the T20 World Cup in the UAE which ended in November.
On Wednesday, on the eve of the Indian team’s departure for the Test series in South Africa, Kohli contradicted board president Sourav Ganguly’s statement. Dismissing an "inaccurate" Ganguly's statement, Kohli said that the board had contacted him just an hour before the Test squad announcement and he was told that ODI captaincy would be handed over to Rohit Sharma. The comment exposed the underlying tension between Kohli and the BCCI officials after he was removed as ODI skipper earlier this month.
"It is not good to point fingers on anybody at this point in time. The South Africa tour is coming and please pay attention to the tour," Kapil Dev told 'ABP News' when asked about his response about Kohli's remarks.
"I would say board president is board president but yes the Indian cricket team captain is also a big thing. But talking badly about each other in public, I don't think it is a good thing, whether it is Sourav or Kohli."
'Think about the country now'
Kapil Dev urged Kohli to take control of the situation and think about cricket rather than controversies.
"Aap situation ko control kijiye, behtar ye hai ki aap desh ke baare mein sochiye (Please control the situation and it's better to think about the country now)," said the former skipper, who played 134 Tests between 1978 and 1994 and took 434 wickets and scored 5248 runs.
"Jo galat hai woh kal pata chal hi jayega but I don't think it is right to stoke a controversy before a tour," he opined.
The Indian Test team, led by Kohli, departed for South Africa on Thursday for a three-match series beginning at Centurion on December 26. India will also play three ODIs after the Test series.
The BCCI has not reacted to Kohli's comments yet.