Virat Kohli will step down from T20I captaincy after the T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman, the India skipper announced in a tweet on Thursday.
Kohli, who captained India in 45 matches, hinted that current limited-overs deputy Rohit Sharma is likely to take over the T20 captaincy from the India batting great. Kohli, in the tweet, said that he arrived at the decision after consulting with current India coach Ravi Shastri and has also discussed the issue with Rohit, who is an "essential part of the leadership group".
The development comes after reports surfaced about Rohit being appointed as T20 skipper following Kohli's title drought in the shortest format. However, the BCCI secretary Jay Shah had refuted reports and insisted that Kohli will continue as India's skipper. Contrary to the statement, the India skipper dropped a surprise announcement just ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) that commences from Sunday.
Following the IPL, the T20 World Cup will take place from October 17-November 14 with India taking on Pakistan on October 24 in their opening game.
"I have been fortunate enough to not only represent India but also lead the Indian Cricket Team to my utmost capability. I thank everyone who has supported me in my journey as the Captain of the Indian Cricket Team. I couldn't have done it without them - the boys, the support staff, the selection committee, my coaches and each and every Indian who prayed for us to win," Kohli wrote.
"Understanding workload is a very important thing and considering my immense workload over the last 8-9 years playing all 3 formats and captaining regularly for last 5-6 years, I feel I need to give myself space to be fully ready to lead the Indian Team in Test and ODI Cricket. I have given everything to the Team during my time as T20 Captain and I will continue to do so for the T20 Team as a batsman moving forward.
"Of course, arriving at this decision took a lot of time. After a lot of contemplation and discussions with my close people, Ravi bhai and also Rohit, who have been an essential part of the leadership group, I've decided to step down as the T20 Captain after this T20 World Cup in Dubai in October. I have also spoken to the secretary Mr Jay Shah and the President of BCCI Mr Sourav Ganguly along with all the selectors. about the same. I will continue to serve Indian Cricket and the Indian Team to the best of my ability," he further added.