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‘Not My Job’ Kohli Frees His Name & Shifts Pujara & Rahane’s Fate Over Selectors’ Heads

One of the biggest questions that have emerged out of India’s recent loss against South Africa in the three-match Test series is about the future of Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara with the team. In the post-match press conference, Indian skipper Virat Kohli addressed the situation and very quickly and swiftly shifted this responsibility over the head of the team selectors.

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A journalist who was virtually present in the press conference asked the Indian skipper whether he knew about Pujara and Rahane’s fate with the team and for how long does he feel these two should be kept in the Playing XI for the work that they have done for the team in the past, even if they aren’t nearly as good at the moment.

Instead of being clear about whether or not he was happy (or unhappy) about having Pujara and Rahane aboard, instead of gathering the courage to say the truth, Kohli opted to bail out of the situation, get his name clear of all the decision-making processes in the future and essentially said that he had no authority in deciding whether or not the two red-ball veterans would be a part of the team for the upcoming series.

Kohli about Pujara-Rahane . No clear indication about the future though.pic.twitter.com/O6QyJ43gct

— Ryan (@ryandesa_07) January 14, 2022

“I cannot sit here and talk about what’s gonna happen in the future. That’s not for me to sit here and discuss. You probably have to speak to the selectors, what they have in mind. This is not my job,” he said while replying to the journalist.

“As I have said before, I will say again, we will continue to back Cheteshwar and Ajinkya because of the kind of players they are, what they have done in Test cricket for India over the years, playing crucial knock in the second innings (in Johannesburg) as well. These are kind of performances we recognise as a team,” the skipper added rather unconvincingly. “What the selectors decide to do, I obviously will not comment sitting here.”

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Obviously, the people watching the press conference could see right through what Kohli was trying to do and they were rather forthcoming in calling BS on the Indian skipper’s ways to free himself of all the blame and putting the onus on the team selectors alone.

on top of it hes putting on the selectors. that i cant take a decision. selecting in 11 is his decision. & that means if selectors select them in squad he will play them in 11

— naq5 (@ntweet_55) January 14, 2022

He needs them coz he is part of the failed middle order. If he throws them out then next he will be in line.

— lifeisbeautiful (@intensegasser) January 14, 2022

Kohli himself not performing and last time after WTC when he spoke of overhaul he was criticised, he himself won take decision to drop these two, he politically pushing it to selectors.If these get chance and fail it is selectors responsibility not virat as cap.well played

— Rajdeep Ghosh (@rajdeep_ghosh) January 14, 2022

Conclusion: team wants them unless selectors decide otherwise.

— Sumit (@SKB40257164) January 14, 2022

not a fan of this. it is the captain’s duty to step up and choose an 11. its not that India did not have options…they had legitimate options waiting and could have been tried. you drop a player if they are not performing, and if you have options. it should have been VK. https://t.co/qzMAiVWPyJ

— Tirthesh Jain (@TirtheshJain2) January 14, 2022

The Men in Blue lost the third and final Test of the series to South Africa by seven wickets, resulting in a 2-1 series loss in Cape Town. The Proteas resumed their 212-run chase on Day 4 of the Test, reaching the goal with absolute ease immediately after the second session, while Kohli and his team’s hunt for a first Test series victory on South African soil continued. 

Despite an easy victory in the first game in Centurion, this tour was hailed as India’s greatest chance to snap a winless Test series record in South Africa, and the Virat Kohli-led team will mourn the squandered opportunity now.

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