It does not take much to get angry, especially if you are Virat Kohli. So, it wasn’t surprising to see the Indian captain vent his displeasure the moment the third umpire ruled him out, caught by Malcolm Waller at mid-wicket off Kyle Jarvis for 14 in the second ODI at the Harare Sports Club yesterday.
Kohli failed in his attempt to beat Waller in the seventh over of the Indian innings and the fielder asked for a review by the third umpire as he was not sure whether he had taken the catch cleanly.
The decision, which looked inconclusive, went in Zimbabwe’s favour, prompting Kohli to openly protest the ruling. Kohli was adamant that the ball had bounced in front of the fielder but could do little once the umpire had raised his index finger.
Kohli’s frustration was understandable, given the terrific century he struck in the previous game at the same venue to take the visitors to a convincing win. Nevertheless, he could be in for some trouble and it remains to be seen what match referee Chris Broad makes of the episode.
Not the first time
What’s more, the incident added to Kohli’s burgeoning list of the number of times he has lost his cool on the cricket field, the most recent being his slamming of the Mumbai crowd at the Wankhede for booing him during the Indian Premier League VI.
In the same tournament, he spared no effort in having a go at his Delhi Ranji teammate Gautam Gambhir. The latter downplayed the incident, saying that things were spoken in the heat of the moment, but that certainly didn’t reflect well on the player many believe is Dhoni’s successor to the hot-seat in Indian cricket.
Few incidents can beat the one that took place during the Sydney Test last year involving Kohli. Not happy with the crowd, the youngster showed them the middle finger, sparking off a needless controversy, especially given the fact that India were already under the weather in cricketing health Down Under.
Remarkably, the Delhite is prone to dishing out profanities even when he is celebrating a milestone. That is precisely what happened when he launched into some swear words after hitting a ton against Pakistan in Dhaka a couple of years ago, only to be left speechless once a Pakistani journalist asked him why he mouthed expletives even though he had enjoyed such a magnificent outing!
Dr BP Bam, a renowned sports psychologist believes aggression is Kohli’s nature, and he has a lot of hard work ahead in order to keep his emotions in check. “Virat is aggressive by nature, just the way some people stay composed in whatever situation they find themselves in,” he said. “Sourav (Ganguly) too was an aggressive player and as you know, they end up suffering because of this trait,” he added.
“The best way forward for Virat is to ‘defer’ his reaction. He must work at accepting the umpires’ decisions and if he is not happy he should stay patient at least till the time he reaches the dressing room. That way he can save himself from difficult situations with match referees.”