Stars react to cricket captain Virat Kohli quitting: Anushka Sharma to Suniel Shetty

The announcement was met with surprise by many A-listers

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On Saturday, Virat Kohli announced he would be stepping down as the Test captain of the Indian cricket team, ending his seven-year reign.

Look through the photos above to see Kohli's career highlights.

“It’s been seven years of hard work, toil and relentless perseverance every day to take the team in the right direction,” Kohli posted on Twitter.

“I’ve done the job with absolute honesty and left nothing out there. Everything has to come to a halt at some stage and for me as Test captain of India, it’s now.

“There have been many ups and also some downs along the journey, but never has there been a lack of effort or lack of belief.

“I have always believed in giving my 120 per cent in everything I do, and if I can’t do that, I know it’s not the right thing to do. I have absolutely clarity in my heart and I cannot be dishonest to my team.”

Celebrities react to Virat Kohli stepping down

Kohli is no stranger to show business – his wife is Indian actress Anushka Sharma – so it makes sense that the move inspired touching reactions from celebrities, many of them Bollywood A-listers.

Sharma posted a sweet message on Instagram on Sunday reminiscing about when Kohli first became captain. "I remember MS (Dhoni), you and I having a chat later that day and him joking about how quickly your beard will start turning grey. We all had a good laugh about it. Since that day, I’ve seen more than just your beard turning grey. I’ve seen growth. Immense growth," she said in the post on Instagram.

She said she was so proud of her husband. "You led by example and gave winning on field every ounce of your energy to the extent that after some losses I’ve sat next to you with tears in your eyes, while you wondered if there's still something more you could have done. This is who you are and this is what you expected from everyone. You've been unconventional and straightforward."

She ended the post with a mention of their daughter Vamika and how she will see the "learnings of these seven years". "You did good," Sharma said.

Meanwhile, Indian actor Suniel Shetty left a comment on Twitter saying he was “teary-eyed, but grateful forever”.

"Aye Captain," he wrote on Twitter. "Thank You. For the sweat. The blood. The tears of joy. For making us a relentless winning force anywhere in the world."

Indian actress Swara Bhasker chimed in with a simple statement calling Kohli a leader in the “truest sense of the word”.

Meanwhile, legendary cricketer Sir Vivian Richards congratulated Kohli on his “stunning run as the Indian captain”.

"You can be very proud of what you have achieved so far, and for sure, your name will be up there among the best leaders in world cricket," Richards wrote on Twitter.

Actor Riteish Deshmukh put out a supportive comment thanking Kohli for making India proud. “No wonder they call him Kong Kohli,” he said on Twitter.

Kahaani 2 star Arjun Rampal was also among many of Kohli’s fans who expressed sadness at the decision, and said he hoped it would be “short lived”.

“Why yaar? You are an amazing captain and have served our nation so well. You have many more years of cricket in you and a captain’s mind,” he said on social media.

Like many others, former India batsman Suresh Raina admitted he was “shocked by the sudden decision”. "I respect his call. I can only applaud him for what he has done for world cricket and India ... Hope he'd continue to shine for India as a player."

Indian actor Vivek Oberoi did not hold back when it came to raining Kohli with compliments. “It’s been a phenomenal journey to being the world’s number 1 test team and making winning series overseas a wonderful habit,” he posted on Twitter.

“But as they say, all good things come to an end. Here’s to you, captain Kohli, take a bow.”

Ranveer Singh also joined in, reacting to Kohli's move with a simple line: "King will always be king."

Updated: January 16, 2022, 10:16 AM