Comment & Analysis
IPL: Virat Kohli to step down as Royal Challengers Bangalore captain at end of 2021 season
Kohli confirmed earlier this week that he will relinquish India's T20 captaincy after the World Cup in October and November; The 32-year-old took over as RCB captain in 2013, leading his side to the 2016 final
Last Updated: 19/09/21 8:44pm
Virat Kohli has announced he will step down as captain of Indian Premier League side Royal Challengers Bangalore at the end of the 2021 season.
Earlier this week, Kohli also confirmed that he will quit as India's T20 captain after this year's World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
The 32-year-old will continue to captain India in Test match and one-day cricket, although he cited his 'immense workload' as the reason behind his decision to relinquish the reigns at RCB.
"This is going to be my last leg in the IPL as RCB captain," Kohli revealed in a video message.
"I spoke to the management this evening. It is something that was on my mind for a while, as I recently announced stepping down from T20 captaincy to manage my workload, which has been immense over the last few years.
"I want to be able to continue to be committed to the responsibilities that I am fulfilling, and I felt I needed the space to refresh, to regroup and be absolutely clear in how I want to move forward."
Kohli has yet to lead RCB to an IPL title after taking on the captaincy in 2013, though he did guide them to the 2016 final, where they were beaten by Sunrisers Hyderabad.
He's amassed a staggering 6,076 runs for Royal Challengers Bangalore throughout his illustrious IPL career, registering five centuries and 40 half-centuries at an average of 37.97.
"RCB is going to go through a transitional phase with a big auction coming up next year. I've made it clear to the management that I cannot think of being in any other team than RCB," added Kohli.
Virat Kohli to step down from RCB captaincy after #IPL2021— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) September 19, 2021
“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.”: Virat Kohli#PlayBold #WeAreChallengers pic.twitter.com/QSIdCT8QQM
"That has been my commitment from day one. I will continue to be an RCB player until I play my last game in the IPL.
"It has been a great journey of nine years. Joy, frustration, moments of happiness and sadness, and I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting me and believing in me relentlessly and unconditionally," he told RCB fans.
"I will continue to be committed to play for this franchise as I said, until the last day of me playing in the IPL, because of what you have done for me and how you have made me feel. That is going to stay with me for the rest of my life, so thank you so much.
"This is just a little halt. This is not the end of the journey. The journey will continue, and it will continue the same way it has for so many years."
The current IPL season resumed in the UAE on Sunday, after it was postponed in May amid a rising number of positive coronavirus cases among the players.
RCB currently occupy third spot in the table, and they can move level on points with Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Capitals at the summit with victory over Kolkata Knight Riders on Monday.
Watch the remainder of the IPL live on Sky Sports. The competition continues on Monday with Kolkata Knight Riders taking on Royal Challengers Bangalore, which is live from 2.50pm on Sky Sports Cricket.