Cricket-Kohli to step down as RCB skipper after 2021 IPL season


FILE PHOTO: Cricket - Fourth Test - England v India - The Oval, London, Britain - September 5, 2021 India's Virat Kohli looks on Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

(Reuters) - Virat Kohli will step down as captain of the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) after the 2021 season, the player said on Sunday.

Kohli this week also gave up the captaincy of India's Twenty20 side to manage his immense workload, saying he would not continue in the role after this year's World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and Oman.

"This will be my last IPL as captain of RCB. I'll continue to be an RCB player till I play my last IPL game. I thank all the RCB fans for believing in me and supporting me," said Kohli on RCB's Twitter handle.

"I spoke to the management this evening. This was something that was on my mind... I needed the space to refresh, regroup and be absolutely clear in how to move forward."

Kohli, who took over as RCB skipper full time in 2013, has yet to lead the side to an IPL title.

"RCB is going to go through a transitional phase with a big auction coming up next year... I've made it to clear to the management that I cannot think of being in any other team than RCB," added the 32-year-old.

RCB take on the Kolkata Knight Riders in Abu Dhabi on Monday in their first game since the resumption of the 2021 season.

(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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