Virat Kohli doesn’t hold back from showing his emotions on the field and the world witnessed another episode of the Indian Test skipper’s on-field outburst. Kohli was caught making unsavoury comments about umpiring and technology in stump mic on Day 3 of the third and final Test against South Africa at Cape Town.
The 33-year-old Kohli’s burst was over opposition skipper Dean Elgar getting a reprieve due to a contentious DRS decision. Elgar was batting on 22 as R Ashwin hit his pads with a tossed up delivery, which looked plumb to naked eyes. But ball-tracking showed the delivery gaining some bounce and going above the stumps, leaving the Indian camp including skipper Kohli puzzled over the technology.
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Livid with the DRS decision, a visibly irked Kohli went up to the stumps and said: “Focus on your team as well when they shine the ball eh, not just the opposition. Trying to catch people all the time.” Rahul and Ashwin also expressed similar reactions. “It’s the whole country against 11 guys,” said KL Rahul, while Ashwin slammed the broadcaster: “You should find better ways to win, SuperSport.”
Kohli’s comments didn’t go down well with many former players including former England skipper Michael Vaughan, who termed it “disgraceful” and said the ICC should also take note of the incident.
“I think that is disgraceful from the Indians personally,” Michael Vaughan said on Fox Sports coverage of the Ashes. “Decisions go with you, they go against you, that didn’t go the way they think it should have gone,” he added.
“Virat Kohli is a legend of the game, but that’s not the way to act, that is not the way to act in a game of Test match cricket. The ICC have to stamp this down, they have to stamp down on the Indian side, you can’t get away with talking down the stump microphone like Ravi Ashwin has done and the Indian captain has done,” he further added.
Spin great Shane Warne hinted at the possibility of the ball hitting the woodwork but Vaughan stuck to his stance on Kohli’s on-field antics. “That’s going on to smash halfway up middle though, there is no way that’s going over, even Erasmus shook his head,” Warne said. “Virat can’t act like that Warnie,” Vaughan said in reply.
Former Australia wicketkeeper-batter Adam Gilchrist also weighed in on the episode, saying that the Indian skipper’s frustration was “brewing” until it reached a point of no return.
“That accusation there I am interested in Warnie, this seems a bit premeditated, ….this has been building or brewing…. and it has got to a breaking point. That accusation about filming teams shining the ball I am assuming it goes all the way back to that very ground when the Australians were caught out on camera,” said Gilchrist.
Warne also condemned Kohli’s jibe, given the fact that he’s the “captain of an international team”, but followed it up by pointing out the frustration element which increased with time.
“Look it is an interesting one, I am not sure that should be happening from a captain of an international team. But sometimes frustration overflows, you just get so frustrated and that’s why I said I wonder if that has happened three or four times through the series, and that was like okay that is enough now we can’t have it anymore,” he said.