Former India batsman Virender Sehwag rates Saurav Ganguly's leadership higher than anyone else in Indian cricket. The former India opener said statistically, Virat Kohli as captain may remain among the best, still, he could not build a team as much as Ganguly did."
"Sourav Ganguly built a new team, brought in new players, and backed them through their highs and lows. I doubt if Kohli did that in his tenure," Sehwag said on Home of Heroes, Sports18's latest offering.
The two-time World Cup winner said during Kohli's captaincy, for 2-3 years, there was a trend to change the team after almost every Test, whether they won or loss.
"In my opinion, the #1 captain is the one who builds a team and gives confidence to his players. He (Kohli) backed some players, some he did not," says Sehwag.
Quizzed if Rishabh Pant's career trajectory was similar to his, with limited success in ODI and T20Is but enviable numbers in Tests, Sehwag agrees and says Pant will be more successful if he opens in limited-overs cricket.
Cricket fans were stunned earlier this year when Pant walked out to open against West Indies in an ODI. He managed a 34-ball 18, but India coach Rahul Dravid knew what he was doing. As the U-19 coach, Dravid witnessed Pant's credentials as an opener when he recorded the fastest U-19 international fifty against Nepal during the 2016 ICC U-19 World Cup, getting there in 18 balls, followed by a century in the next match against Namibia.
"We don't play limited-overs to score 50 or 100 but to score at a brisk pace, no matter the situation or the opposition," said Sehwag. "At no. 4 or 5, he will find himself in situations that demand greater responsibility, but if he opens, he will be far more successful."
Sehwag also earmarked Prithvi Shaw as the player to watch out for in the future. "He is a player who can bring back the excitement in Test cricket," Sehwag opined. "Opposition will have to think if 400 would be enough with Shaw and Pant in our ranks."
"Shaw and Pant in one team could help India rule Test cricket, win the World Test Championship," Sehwag claimed.