I had defended Sourav when Chappell was coach’: Ex-BCCI selector says Ganguly should have handled the Kohli saga better

It has been a few days since Virat Kohli came clear about what transpired on the day he was asked to step down as India’s ODI captain, but that hasn’t stopped former cricketers from continuing to weigh in on the matter.

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Just when it seemed that Kohli had ended all speculations

Related to his removal as captain and rift with Rohit Sharma, the India Test captain’s statement of the decision being taken well by the BCCI, a stark contrast to president Sourav Ganguly’s take created another uproar.

Ganguly, the BCCI chief, has since said that the board will handle the matter internally and urged the public to ‘let it go’,

but it hasn’t managed to silence former India all-rounder Kirti Azad, who was serving as the national selector when the infamous Ganguly-Chappell controversy broke out and the then-India captain was asked to step down as captain, eerily similar to what transpired with Kohli now.

While Azad has no issues with the decision, he definitely feels that Ganguly, as the board’s president, should have tackled the timing of letting Kohli know a bit better.

“I remember how Bishan Bedi was dethroned, how Sunil Gavaskar was dethroned.

Venkataraghavan was in his flight and when he landed, he was replaced as captain. At least, Sourav should have realised through his own experience,” Azad told News18.

“I remember I had defended him when Greg Chappell was a coach and he was dropped as captain. He should have learnt from his own example and spoken to Virat much earlier.

I am not saying Virat is a special case. Yes, he is a special batter and a special cricketer. He leads by example and leads by example.” 

Azad reckons the entire matter should not have reached the public eye while adding that Ganguly should have addressed the situation better, especially after former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin had tweeted about the possibility of a rift in the Indian camp.

“Virat Kohli has informed that he’s not available for the ODI series & Rohit Sharma is unavailable for the upcoming test.

There is no harm in taking a break but the timing has to be better.

This just substantiates speculation about the rift. Neither will be giving up the other form of cricket,” is what Azharuddin had tweeted.

“I feel that it should have been done in a more proper manner.

BCCI should have been a little more professional on a cricketing front and with Sourav at the helm, especially when a former captain had tweeted about a rift, speculation that had been going on.

These things should not come out in the public and a captain who has given so much, Virat Kohli, should have been informed well in advance,” the former BCCI selector pointed out.

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