NEW DELHI: Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has called for the current skipper MS Dhoni to “take a break” from helming the side in all three formats and named the young firebrand Virat Kohli as a possible replacement.
“It's still early days as far as 2015 World Cup is concerned but I believe that a break in captaincy will do wonders for Dhoni. I am not saying that it has to happen during the middle of a series but may be after the Australia series or later part of 2013. We need to have a look at that," Gavaskar said.
“The break might be a voluntary one or an enforced break. But he needs time to reflect on his game and come back in a better way. I am very impressed in the manner he remains cool and unlike other captain doesn't clap and all but a little break won't be bad. Captaining India is a high privilege but the demands and pressures that come with it are incredible," he added.
Gavaskar went a step further, likening the 24-year-old Kohli to the deceased Mansur Ali Khan – India’s youngest Test captain at 21 – saying the Delhi batsman could “bring the flair of Tiger Pataudi in his captaincy”.
“I could be wrong but Virat Kohli might bring the flair of Tiger Pataudi in his captaincy. If he knows that he will be appointed for long term, he has the dynamism, the aggression, panache and class. I like everything about him apart from his mouthing abuses when he reaches a milestone. I don't want him to change anything else as he can bring a lot of dynamism.”
Asked if Dhoni was good enough to warrant a place on the team as only a player, Gavaskar answered, “Why not? He can be part of the team for the next couple of years as he is a match-winner.”
The veteran Indian opener was of the opinion that an Indian should coach the national team, now that Duncan Fletcher's contract was unlikely to be renewed after the Australia series. He also hinted that the man in the hot seat should be a former cricketer with vast experience.
“I would like it to be an Indian coach or somebody who is like Gary Kirsten. Kirsten had scored lots of runs in ODI and Tests and brought along a certain work ethic as he had done it all. If you have a champion cricketer, he can help you get better.”