The Australian media and former players have been aggressive in their stand against the Indian team’s tactics and Virat Kohli specifically in the build-up to the Dharamshala test. After what transpired at Ranchi, the Australians have the mental edge and their media is trying to cash in on the opportunity to distract the Indians with loads of criticism about their mannerisms. Here, we look at three notable comments from the Aussie fraternity.
CA Australia chief James Sutherland isn’t sure whether Kohli knows how to spell ‘sorry’:
The DRS-Saga refuses to die down, with repeated references to Kohli’s bold accusations where he stopped millimetres short of calling Aussie skipper Steve Smith a cheater. Cricket Australia chief was the architect of a truce between CA and the BCCI and he dissuaded BCCI from filing an official complaint with the ICC. When asked in a radio interview whether Virat Kohli should apologise to Steve Smith for nearly calling him a cheater, Sutherland wittily replied, “Look I am not sure he knows how to spell the word.”
He, however, hoped that the aggression will be nipped in the bud by the end of the series, and both teams would end the series with a smile irrespective of the outcome. “After the end of this long and cut-throat series, let’s hope the boys from both teams get together and have a bit of a laugh. I know they are going to spend a lot of time together in the IPL, so I am sure if it doesn’t happen after Dharamsala Test, it will happen during the IPL. ” said Sutherland. Something sensible after hordes of unavailing comments indeed!
Former Pakistan coach Geoff Lawson feels Kohli’s actions are the worst behaved player:
Former Australia pacer and Pakistan coach Geoff Lawson minced no words, slamming Virat Kohli for his on-field antics and calling him the ‘worst behaved player’.
Speaking to Fox Sports, Lawson said, “Well Virat’s consistent. You’ve got to give him that, he’s consistent. As a leader and as a captain of a cricket team where you’ve got lots of responsibilities, you’ve got to show more gravitas and responsibility than this. These sorts of actions are those of your worst behaved player.”
Lawson claims Kohli has been treading a fine line with the umpires and has been really lucky to get away with his aggressive and expletive-laden send-offs. He said, “Send-offs are supposed to be against the code of conduct and he was certainly caught on camera using some bad language in the second Test match,” he said, “I’m surprised he didn’t get reported. But he must be treading a really fine line with the umpires and match referees because you’re not supposed to give players send-offs.”
He feels Kohli must restrain himself from any questionable behaviour on the field and learn to behave better. He is undoubtedly a great player but he needs to curb the aggression according to him.
Australian legend Steve Waugh feels Kohli has elements of his and Ponting’s captaincy:
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) March 23, 2017
Contradictory the above two statements, this is something positive about Kohli coming from the Australian camp after a long time. Waugh feels Kohli’s aggression is justified just like himself and his successor Ponting, both captains of the Invincible Australian lot of the 2000s.
Waugh was quoted as saying “He’s obviously a very aggressive captain, he encourages a lot of talk amongst his troops and he’s got positive body language. And they’re all the traits that I liked in my sides” by cricket.com.au. “I always believed the way you carry yourself is important, that you give off positive vibes to each other and the opposition sort of sense that ‘this is a team that’s really together’. Virat Kohli certainly does that. His players play for him, which is a great sign for a captain.”
He further added, “Ricky Ponting was a similar type of player; he’d roll his sleeves up, get stuck in, he’d go into bat pad if he needed to and led by example. And Virat Kohli certainly does that.”
His comments are some respite for Kohli, who has been at the receiving end of potshots from the opposition camp. Kohli is still establishing his credibility as a captain, having already notched an impressive record, and is set to establish Indian dominance for years to come. These comments from a player of Waugh’s stature have increased the pressure of expectation on Kohli with comparisons already pouring. Every Indian fan today is just hoping he lives up to the billing!