Virat Kohli promises to retaliate if Australia start sledging war

first_imgVirat Kohli has promised not to go out looking for trouble but in the same breath he added the Indian team will retaliate if Australia play dirty down under starting this month.India leave for Australia to play a three-match T20I series starting November 21 before the four-Test series gets underway from December 6. Three ODIs are scheduled to be played in January.India and Australia have had some bitter verbal jousts over the years. The past two Test series in particular have been acrimonious with Steve Smith’s decision to look at the Australian dressing room for help with the DRS in the Bengaluru Test drawing the ire of the Indian players.Even as Smith apologised for his brain freeze, Kohli later told the media that was not the only time he had tried to cheat. By the the end of the four-match series, relations between Kohli and some of the Australian players were soured up – the Indian captain even said he would not want to be friends with a few Aussie cricketers again.Also read – Don’t like our batsmen, leave! Is Kohli too impulsive as a captain?However, there has since been a transition in the Australian cricket culture. Smith and David Warner were banned for a year over their roles in the infamous ball-tampering scandal. Australian cricketers under new Test captain Tim Paine are now expected to play with a smile and be nice boys on the field.Several ex-Australian cricketers feel Paine’s team is going too far with the good boy image; instead, the focus, they said, has to be on winning games fair and square.advertisementKohli has never got on well with Smith – both men are fiercely competitive and rank among the best batsmen of their generation. It remains to be seen how Paine manages his team against India. By some accounts, the Australian team was not all that friendly during their two Test matches against Pakistan recently and Kohli has vowed to give it back if the Australians are mean again.Also watch – It’s a joy to watch Virat Kohli: Sachin Tendulkar”When it comes to getting engaged in an argument on the field, I have been completely okay playing without an altercation. I have enough belief in my abilities.. those were very immature things I used to feed on when I was younger,” Kohli said at India’s pre-departure press conference. “Now being captain of the team, you do not have time to think of anything else apart from what the team needs.”Kohli claimed the Indian team never starts a sledging game and his players only fight back when they are provoked.”We were always the ones giving it back. As long as it does not start, we will not go out looking for anything but we will reciprocate.Also Read – You don’t decide if India is best travelling side in the world: COA tells Ravi Shastri”I know from the management point of view, things are explained of what the team needs. As long as it does not start, we are okay with it. In our own minds, we have to be competitive and not let our focus drop.”But verbal battles will be the least of Kohli’s troubles in Australia especially during the Test matches. India have lost successive away Test series in South Africa and England despite the captain’s sensational run. He now expects his batsmen to stand up and deliver in a phase when the bowlers are doing so well.Also read – Steve Waugh ‘not sure’ if current Indian team is better than the ones he played againstKohli is also happy with the fitness level of his team. He said there was a marked difference between this team and the one that toured Australia four years ago – that has been possible only because of the skipper’s no-tolerance policy for unfit athletes in his squad. Today, Kohli is waiting to reap the rewards.”I definitely believe our fitness levels are up: which is the most important thing in Australia because pitches can sometimes become very boring there,” said Kohli who went on exemplify the good work of some of South Africa’s pacers down under over the years.Also watch – BCCI’s demand ahead of Australia tour: No beef on menuKohli said he had enough confidence his bowlers could do something similar.”We are always feeling good about the fact that we have a good bowling attack but our batsmen have to step up as well. That is something we spoke about after the England tour. Our focus will be more on how the batsmen bat togther. Our bowlers are in the space and after a long time, we will we can pick 20 wickets in a game,” he said.advertisementAlso watch –last_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required fields are marked *