Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma Announce Retirement From T20I Cricket

Indian cricket icons Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma announced their retirement from T20 Internationals after helping India win the T20 World Cup 2024 title on Saturday.

In the final, Kohli scored 76 off 59 deliveries to help dig the Indian cricket team out of trouble following a shaky start at the Kensington Oval in Barbados. 

This was India’s second T20 World Cup title and the first in 17 years.

“This is my last T20 game playing for India, my last World Cup I was going to play,” the 37-year-old Kohli said after the final. 

“I wanted to make the most of it. And this was our aim. We wanted to win an ICC tournament, we wanted to lift the cup.

“This was an open secret, it was not something that I was not going to announce if we’d lost. It’s time for the next generation to take over. There are some amazing players playing in India. I’ve no doubts they’ll keep the flag waving high, and really take this team further from here now,” he added.

Kohli played 125 T20I matches in his career, scoring 4188 runs at an average of 48.69 and a strike rate of 137.04. He is the second-highest scorer in the format.

With 1292 runs in 35 matches, Kohli, a former Team India captain across formats, also finishes his career at the top of the run scorers’ charts in T20 World Cups. He remains the only player to have been the highest run scorer in two different T20 World Cups.

Kohli scored 319 runs in the 2014 World Cup in Bangladesh and followed it up with 296 runs in the 2022 edition in Australia. 

His 319 runs in 2014, scored at an average of 106.33, is the highest run tally for any batsman at a single edition of the T20 World Cup.

He was also named in the ICC Men’s T20I Team of the Decade from 2011 to 2020.

Rohit Sharma, 4231 runs in 159 outings, has more runs in the T20I format than Kohli. He made his T20I debut in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2007 against England and helped India win the trophy under MS Dhoni’s captaincy.

Rohit was his team’s highest run-scorer in the tournament with 257 in eight matches.

As captain, the 35-year-old Rohit Sharma led India in 62 T20Is, winning 49 and losing only 12. Kohli captained in 50 matches, emerging victorious in 30 while losing 16.

“This is my last game as well, no better time to say goodbye to this format,” Rohit said after the T20 World Cup final, which marked his 50th win as Indian T20 captain. 

“I’ve loved every moment of this. I started my career for India playing this format and this is what I wanted, I wanted to win the World Cup.”