With the T20I series against Sri Lanka that got underway from Tuesday in Mumbai, the Indian team management seems to have started the process of building a team for the future which can be a strong contender for the world cup when it’s held in 2024. However, it appears that they have also moved on from two of India’s finest batters of modern era - Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli - at least in the T20Is.
While there’s no official word on whether the phasing out of senior players has indeed kickstarted, the fact that Hardik Pandya has now led India in three different bilateral series since June 2022, it does appear that the allrounder is might have become the first choice to lead the team in T20Is.
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However, two-time world cup winner Gautam Gambhir isn’t sure if Rohit should be judged one the basis of his performance as a captain in just one ICC tournament.
Gambhir adds that if the selectors have told Rohit, Kohli and even KL Rahul that they are no longer needed in T20Is, then the team has actually moved on.
“We have to wait and watch. If actually selectors have moved on from Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, then probably yes," Gambhir responded to a query on whether Pandya is now the frontrunner to captain India across formats on Star Sports.
“When Rohit comes back, it’s gonna be difficult for someone like Hardik to replace him as captain because judging him by just one ICC tournament, it’s not the right parameter. If selectors have already communicated to Virat, KL Rahul and Rohit, and all those guys. If there’s clear communication, they have moved on from them. Then probably Hardik is the only guy at the moment because he is the only one who actually fits in that playing XI. And then you got Suryakumar as his deputy. So I think, that’s going to be the way forward," he added.
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While Rohit isn’t part of the ongoing three-match T20I series with Sri Lanka, he will return to lead the side in the ODIs.
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