Will Shubman Gill replace Rohit Sharma as India T20I captain? Former India coach delivers blunt verdict

Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma

Who will replace Rohit Sharma as the T20I captain? This is the question that will become a major talking point in the Indian cricket fraternity as soon as the T20 World Cup victory celebrations conclude.

Rohit Sharma announced his retirement from T20Is soon after India defeated South Africa in the final. The retirement was very close to happening as the selectors had called up Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli only for the T20 World Cup. Both players had not played a single T20I last year before being called up to the T20I squad in January this year. Like Rohit, Kohli also announced his retirement after the World Cup triumph.

Last year, Hardik Pandya led the team before Suryakumar Yadav was also handed the responsibility after the former was ruled out due to injury. Many believe that fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah is also a worthy candidate to lead the team in T20Is. Recently, Shubman Gill has also emerged as a candidate as the selectors named him as the captain for the five-match series in Zimbabwe.

Saba Karim on Shubman Gill’s chances:

Although Shubman Gill has been named as captain for the series against Zimbabwe, former India wicketkeeper and selector Saba Karim believes it is still too early to give the opener the responsibility of leading the T20I team on a permanent basis.

Speaking to SportsNow, Karim said Gill has leadership skills and can be the captain in the future. He then backed Pandya to replace Rohit as the T20I captain.

“Yes, there is potential, but right now I think it is too early for the selectors to decide who can be the captain in the coming years. There are several contenders, Hardik Pandya is now the vice-captain and I think with Rohit leaving, it is more evident that Pandya will take over.”

“But yes, I think the Indian selectors have always seen Shubman Gill as an all-format player and they feel that he has the leadership skills required to take the team forward, that’s why this Zimbabwe series will be quite exciting for Gill, not only as a batsman but also as a captain,” he added.

Meanwhile, the five-match T20I series between India and Zimbabwe is set to begin on July 6. After failing to qualify for the T20 World Cup, Gill will have something to prove as he will look to lead the team from the front.