Former Pakistan cricketer Danish Kaneria has said that the Indian dressing room was divided into two groups during the first ODI game against South Africa in Paarl on Wednesday and he mentioned that the stand-in captain KL Rahul and former captain Virat Kohli were sitting apart.
India lost the first ODI of the three-match ODI series against South Africa by 31 runs. Batting first South Africa scored 296 runs with the help of an incredible partnership between Temba Bavuma and Rassie van der Dussen. While chasing the target India were restricted to 265/8 despite a good partnership between Shikhar Dhawan and Kohli.
Speaking on his YouTube channel Kaneria said that the former ODI captain Kohli wasn’t in the same mood after leaving the captaincy. “We saw during is the game is that the Indian dressing room was divided into two groups. KL Rahul and Virat Kohli were sitting apart. Also, Kohli wasn’t in the same mood as he used to be when he was the captain. But he’s a team man and will come back stronger,” said Kaneria on his YouTube channel.
“After losing the Test series, India would be eager to redeem themselves and clinch the ODI rubber. But Rahul hasn’t shown that spark until now. He had led in the Test series but wasn’t able to lift the team to break the South African partnership. At one stage, it didn’t look like the Proteas would put up 296 on the scoreboard. Lack of intensity from the Indian team helped the opposition in scoring such a total. There were also fielding lapses from the visitors,” he further said.
“Rahul needs to lift up captaincy and batting as well. He needs to lift the team. Also, Bhuvneshwar Kumar gave away many runs against South Africa and the Ashwin-Chahal pair didn’t look effective like the Kuldeep-Chahal duo. India didn’t use Venkatesh Iyer’s bowling services too. The next ODI will be played at the same venue and India needs to learn from their mistakes. Their intensity was poor in the series opener,” Kaneria further said.