On 30 December 2014, Indian cricket entered a new era with MS Dhoni quitting the Test arena and paving the way for Virat Kohli to take over as the team’s new skipper in the format. Kohli’s rise to the helm of affairs ushered in a new aggressive brand of cricket, one that has rarely been witnessed before in India’s rich cricketing history.
So far, the results have been highly positive as the Indians have won every full series that they have played under the Delhi cricketer’s leadership. Moreover, 2 out of the 4 series wins with Kohli captaining the side have come away from home, in Sri Lanka and West Indies.
Although it may still be early days to put Kohli in the same bracket as Dhoni, there are already certain things about the way that the former has led the team which give him an advantage over his predecessor.
Here are 5 things Virat Kohli has done better than MS Dhoni as Test captain thus far:
#1 Trying to make things happen rather than letting the game drift
One of the biggest criticisms that MS Dhoni faced during his time as skipper of the Indian Test team was his tendency to allow the game to drift for long periods of time, especially in overseas conditions. This tactic from Dhoni often gave opposition teams enough leeway to claw their way back into the match and the outcome ended up being negative for India on several occasions.
Virat Kohli, on the contrary, is not one to sit back and wait for the opposition batsmen to make mistakes. Instead, he tries different ways and means, including changing the field settings and shuffling around his bowlers, in order to unsettle the batsmen and create chances for a breakthrough.
Kohli’s leadership is yet to be tested in conditions like those in England, South Africa and even New Zealand, for that matter. But if he can stick to this habit of trying to change the course of the match with some smart captaincy, we may see the Indian team achieve a lot of overseas success, too.