'Energy that Virat keeps was missing': Ex-PAK skipper criticises Rahul's captaincy; 'Didn't see anything out-of-the-box'
- The former Pakistan captain, while talking about Team India's intensity on the field, was critical of Rahul's captaincy in the game.
India faced a 31-run defeat in the first ODI against South Africa on Wednesday. The team, led by KL Rahul in absence of opener Rohit Sharma, looked rusty as it returned to the fifty-over format after almost six months; the appearance was also India's first since Virat Kohli was succeeded by Rohit as the full-time white-ball skipper.
South Africa put on 296/4 while batting first in the Paarl ODI as captain Temba Bavuma and Rassie van der Dussen put brilliant centuries on the board. While India made a positive start to the game by clinching three wickets early, the duo of Bavuma and van der Dussen forged a 204-run stand for the fourth wicket to take the momentum away from the visitors.
Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt, while talking about Team India's intensity on the field, was critical of Rahul's captaincy in the game. Butt said that there was nothing “out-of-the-box” from Rahul and the “energy” which Virat Kohli brought to the field as captain was missing.
“The energy that Virat keeps on the ground was missing today. It depends from person to person. When you give responsibility to someone, their vibe completely changes and vice-versa. But the energy you expect from a captain was missing today. I didn't see anything out-of-the box. You keep on trying and keep the opposition guessing; I didn't see that in KL Rahul,” Butt said on his official YouTube channel.
Butt also pointed out that India had recently won with two different teams in England and Sri Lanka and that the team management needs to ponder over a decline in performance in the past month.
“India have world class players like Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. They are top-class leaders. Of course, Rohit Sharma is not in the team at the moment. But the energy is missing here. The morale gets hurt. What if they lose the series? When was the last time India lost both series on the same tour?” Butt said.
“Only last year, two different teams won in England and Sri Lanka. Suddenly, even your middle-order doesn't look complete because 1-2 players are missing. You need to think about it.”