Will be in Royal Challengers Bangalore Till The Last Day of my IPL: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli played his final match as the captain of Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday night as they exited IPL 2021 after losing the Eliminator to Kolkata Knight Riders by four wickets in Sharjah. Kohli had announced before the start of the UAE leg that he will step down from the RCB captaincy at the end of the ongoing season.
Kohli led RCB in 140 matches of which they won 66 and lost 70 with four producing no results. Under him, they made the final in 2016 but finished runners-up. However, in 2017 and 2019 they finished at the last in the points table.
When asked about how he sees his tenure as captain, Kohli said, “I have tried my best to create a culture here where youngsters could come in and play with freedom and belief. It is something I have done with India as well.”
Kohli said he gave his 120 per cent every time for the team and will now continue to do this as a player. “I have given 120% to this franchise every time which is something I will now do as a player. It is a great time to regroup and restructure for the next three years with people who will take this ahead,” Kohli said.
With a major auction set to be held before the next season starts, Kohli has made it clear he doesn’t see himself playing for any other IPL franchise other than RCB.
When asked if he will be playing for RCB next season he said, “Yes, definitely,” and added, “I don’t see myself playing anywhere else. Loyalty matters more to me than worldly pleasures. I would be in the RCB till the last day I play in the IPL.”
RCB made a decent 138/7 in the Eliminator on a pitch where scoring runs proved to be a task especially after the Powerplay. RCB fought well and pushed the contest into the final over but KKR edged past with two deliveries to spare.
Kohli said the middle overs when RCB were batting and KKR spinners were on top proved to be the difference. “Those middle overs where their spinners dominated the game was the difference. They kept bowling in tight areas and kept picking wickets. We had a great start and it was about quality bowling and not bad batting. They thoroughly deserve to win this one and be in the next round,” he said.
RCB were in the game till 12th over when Sunil Narine clobbered three sixes in an over of Dan Christian to tilt the balance in his team’s favour. “That one big over in the middle deflated our chances. We fought till the last over and made an amazing game out of it. 15 runs less with the bat and a couple of big overs with the ball cost us,” Kohli said.