Former Pakistan bowler Shoaib Akhtar on Friday came out in support of India captain Virat Kohli over his on-field “aggression” during the 2nd Test against Australia in Perth. The right-handed batsman was involved in a banter with Aussie skipper Tim Paine. With the cricketing world divided over his antics, the former Pakistan seamer said that people should “cut him some slack”.
“@imVkohli is one of the modern greats of the game. Aggression has been a part & parcel of competitive cricket, specially when you are playing Down Under as long as it stays in limit. Please cut him some slack,” Akhtar wrote on Twitter.
@imVkohli is one of the modern greats of the game. Aggression has been a part & parcel of competitive cricket, specially when you are playing Down Under as long as it stays in limit. Please cut him some slack.
— Shoaib Akhtar (@shoaib100mph) 20 December 2018
Tensions had flared up on the 4th day of the Perth Test when Kohli and Paine engaged in a verbal joust when the latter was batting. With Australia gaining control, the Indian captain stepped up to Paine, and the latter reminded him that he lost his cool a day before on the field.”
Later, during India’s innings, the stump mic caught Paine telling opening batsman Murali Vijay that he cannot seriously like his skipper. “Murali, I know he’s your captain but you can’t seriously like him as a bloke,” Paine was heard as saying.
Australia levelled the 4-Test match series 1-1 after handing India a 146-run defeat at Perth. It was their first win since the ball tampering saga that rocked Cricket Australia in March this year.
The two teams will meet up again for the Boxing Day Test at MCG.