Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) coach Mike Hesson expressed his gratitude towards skipper Virat Kohli for being a "fully committed" leader during his reign. Kohli has announced that he will be relinquishing RCB captaincy duties at the end of the ongoing season.
Reacting to the video message from Kohli, Hesson wrote that the RCB players will be fully committed to giving the outgoing skipper a fitting farewell. He wrote:
"Have only been here a short time but I thank you @imVkohli for all you have done for @RCBTweets as a fully committed leader and team man, your energy and passion is infectious. I know the boys are fully committed to help send you out on a well deserved high skipper 🤝#PlayBold"
In the video message, a seemingly emotional Kohli cited workload management as the reason behind his decision to give up leadership duties. The decision comes just a few days after the Indian skipper announced that he won't be leading the national side in the shortest format of the game after the T20 World Cup.
"Spoke to the management this evening. It was something on my mind for a while. As I recently announced, (I'll be) stepping down from T20 captaincy as well to manage my workload which has been immense over the last so many years."
The Indian skipper also alluded to the fact that RCB will go through a transitional phase in the mega auction next year as the reason behind his decision.
"I want to continue to remain committed to the responsibilities I am fulfilling and I felt I needed this space to refresh, regroup and be absolutely clear in how I want to move forward. And also understanding that RCB is going to go through a transitional phase with a big auction coming in next year. I made it clear to the management that (smiles) I can't think of being in any other team than RCB and that's been my commitment from day one," Kohli added.
Kohli took over the leadership duties of the Royal Challengers back in 2013. He has led the franchise in 132 games, winning 62 and losing 66, with four matches ending with no result.
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"I will only play for RCB until my retirement" - Virat Kohli
Kohli went on to thank his fans for their constant support over the years while assuring them that he'll continue to play for the franchise until the final day of his IPL career.
The Indian skipper admitted that the decision to quit the captaincy wasn't an easy one but iterated that it would be good for the franchise as well as for him personally in the long run. Kohli said:
"It has been a great and an inspiring journey, captaining a talented bunch of players in the RCB squad. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the RCB management, coaches, support staff, players, and the entire RCB family, who have been instrumental in the growth of the franchise over the years."
"It wasn't an easy decision but one that has been well thought of and in the best interest of this wonderful franchise. The RCB family remains close to my heart as we continue to strive to achieve excellence. As I have mentioned previously on many occasions, I will only play for RCB until my retirement from the game of cricket," Kohli added.
RCB will resume their IPL 2021 campaign on Monday (September 20) against the Kolkata Knight Riders and they'll hope to pick up from where they left off in the first phase. This will be Kohli's 200th game in the lucrative league and he and the entire team will be hoping to make it a special occasion for the entire unit.