By Sudipto Ganguly
MUMBAI (Reuters) – India cricket captain Virat Kohli said on Thursday he expects a healthy and professional discussion with Sourav Ganguly, a day after the newly appointed board chief termed the batting mainstay the “most important man” for the game in the country.
One of India’s most successful captains, Ganguly took over the reins of the world’s richest cricket board on Wednesday from a court-appointed panel which governed the game in the country for nearly three years.
The 47-year-old promised full support to Kohli to make India the best team in the world and said he will sit down with the captain to chart the way forward.
“I am going to meet him now,” Kohli told reporters at a promotional event in Mumbai. “I have met him before to discuss a lot of things. I am looking forward to a good discussion.”
Ganguly, who played 113 tests and 311 one-day internationals, helped India emerge from a damaging match-fixing scandal in 2000 and led the side to 21 test wins.
The former left-handed batsman said there will be “mutual respect” between him and Kohli, who was handed test captaincy abruptly at the start of 2015 when long-serving skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni retired from test cricket midway through a series.
Kohli already has more test wins than Dhoni while leading in fewer matches and the world’s top-ranked test side have won 11 consecutive series at home. India also lead the points table for the recently-launched World Test Championship.
“He (Ganguly) is someone who has played a lot of cricket before, who knows the situation we are in, what the team needs, the requirements of Indian cricket,” Kohli said.
“So you need a good, professional, high-level discussion. It will be a healthy discussion because I am playing currently and he has played before, there will be a understanding of these things.
“I have had good discussions in the past with him and I expect the same this time.”
(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; editing by Pritha Sarkar)