'Adam Gilchrist wanted Rohit Sharma to be vice-captain': Former India spinner reveals staggering details from IPL days
- During IPL 2009, Deccan Chargers captain Adam Gilchrist had spotted the then-young Rohit Sharma's leadership skills and wanted him to be his deputy.
Having made his international debut back in 2007, a year before Virat Kohli's, it took Rohit Sharma 14 years to become India's full-time captain. Deputy to Kohli since a long time in ODIs and T20Is, the BCCI finally awarded the country's limited-overs cricketing captaincy to Rohit, who has a fine record as captain.
Not that Kohli's captaincy record is underwhelming. He ends his captaincy tenure as India's most successful captain in terms of a win-loss ratio. But perhaps the inability to land a title – ICC and IPL alike – could have been a factor behind the BCCI pulling the plug on Kohli's tenure as India's ODI skipper.
As for Rohit, there is no shortage of accolade for him as far as captaincy is concerned. He is the IPL's most successful skipper, having led Mumbai Indians to five IPL titles and even took India to an Asia Cup win in 2018 in Kohli's absence. In fact, former India spinner Pragyan Ojha has revealed details from his and Rohit's tenure at Deccan Chargers, mentioning how captain Adam Gilchrist had spotted the then-youngster's leadership skills and wanted him to be his deputy.
"When Rohit first came into the Mumbai side, he was never projected as a leader. Slowly things started to change when he was put in the core group of the Deccan Chargers. Adam Gilchrist wanted Rohit Sharma to be the vice-captain," Ojha said on Cricbuzz Live.
The year Ojha is referring to is 2009, when the Chargers had won the IPL. Gilchrist was the leading run-getter of the IPL that season, followed by Rohit at three with 362 runs with one half-century. Ojha recalled how just two years into his professional cricketing career, the management and Gilchrist had noticed leadership sparks in Rohit.
"It had just maybe been two years that he had started playing international cricket but when he used to give feedbacks about certain players or give a certain game plan then the team management started to see the leadership qualities in him," added the former left-arm spinner.
Discussions had started within the Deccan Chargers team that if anyone was going to replace Gilchrist, it can be Rohit. People's perspective about Rohit started to change from then that he is not only a capable batter but also can be a captain in future."