Johannesburg: India pace bowler Mohammed Siraj has called Virat Kohli his “superhero” after the latter stepped down as the Test skipper following the 1-2 series loss to the Dean Elgar-led South Africa.
Siraj was a part of the opening Test against the Proteas at Centurion, grabbing three wickets as India defeated the home team by 113 runs. He had issues with his hamstring on the opening day of the second Test at Johannesburg, which India lost by seven wickets.
Ahead of the third Test, Kohli said that the pacer was “not match-fit” and excluded him from the playing XI. “Siraj is recovering from the niggle he had from the last game I don’t think he is match fit to take the field (for the third Test),” Kohli had said.
Siraj is also Kohli’s teammate at the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore.
On Tuesday, the 27-year-old Siraj posted a heartfelt message on Instagram days after Kohli relinquished his Test captaincy.
“To my superhero, I cannot be thankful enough for the support and the encouragement that I got from you. You have always been my great brother. Thank you for trusting me and believing in me for all these years. For seeing the great at my worst. You will always be my captain King Kohli @virat.kohli,” wrote Siraj.
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Kohli will now play purely as a batter in the three-match ODI series beginning at Paarl on January 19.