Virat Kohli with RCB players
Virat Kohli with RCB players
Twitter/@IPL

Despite starting the season on a good note and finishing fourth in the points table, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) had to end their campaign in Eliminator on Friday and former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir feels that the time has come for RCB to look beyond Virat Kohli as captain.

Kane Williamson smashed his 14th IPL half-century while Jason Holder played a cautious knock as Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) kept their finals hope alive after defeating RCB by six-wicket in the Eliminator here at Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Friday.

The two-time IPL-winning captain Gambhir said Kohli must be held accountable for RCB's poor run in the showpiece event.

When asked if he would change the captaincy if he was in charge of the franchise, Gambhir said on ESPNcricinfo's show T20 Time Out: "100 per cent, because the problem is about accountability. Eight years into the tournament [without a trophy], eight years is a long time. Tell me any other captain... forget about captain, tell me any other player who would have got eight years and wouldn't have won the title and would have still continued with it. So it has to be accountability." "A captain needs to take accountability. It's not only about one year, it's not only about this. I have nothing against Virat Kohli but somewhere down the line, he needs to put his hand up and say, 'yes, I am responsible, I am accountable," he added.

The Virat Kohli-led side finished runners-up in 2016 and since then have ended at the bottom in 2017 and 2019 respectively. In 2018, the side finished at the sixth spot.

"Eight years is a long, long time. Look at what happened to R Ashwin. Two years of captaincy [for the Kings XI Punjab], he couldn't deliver and he was removed. We talk about MS Dhoni, we talk about Rohit Sharma, we talk about Virat Kohli... not at all," said Gambhir.

"Dhoni has won three [IPL] titles, Rohit Sharma has won four titles, and that's the reason they've captained for such a long time because they've delivered. I'm sure if Rohit Sharma wouldn't have delivered for eight years, he would have been removed as well. There should not be different yardsticks for different people," he added.

"Eight years is a long time. It's not that Kohli isn't experienced. He captains India, he captains whichever team he plays for, but you've got to give results, you've got to deliver. Sport is all about delivering," Gambhir further said.

Under Kohli's captaincy since 2013, RCB have made the playoffs three times in eight seasons but the side from Banglore has failed to clinch the IPL trophy.

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