Clash with Gambhir, furore on Anushka - excerpts from Virat Kohli’s biography

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Clash with Gambhir, furore on Anushka - excerpts from Virat Kohli’s biography

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SportsCafe Desk

10/14/2016

Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli, with a tweet today, ignited sudden interest in a book about him that details events in his career including that ugly spat with Gautam Gambhir in 2012. The book also details Kohli's reaction to the trolling of his ex-partner Anushka Sharma for his on-field failures.

'Driven', the book on Virat Kohli's life, personal and professional, explores the parts of his career that have set him apart from most players who have ever represented India. Be it standing up to abuse from fans or just losing his cool in the heat of a close game, from Anushka to Gambhir, the book contains all controversial/juicy headlines that the star has created so far.

The book written by Vijay Lokapally, the Deputy sports editor for The Hindu, provides a glimpse into riveting moments in Kohli's career.

For anyone who has followed Kohli's career since he broke into the national team, it will not be a surprise to read that the Delhi-born cricketer does not hold anything back. But retaliating the way he did still sent shock waves down the "Gentleman’s sport" when each of these happened.

"Virat is a work in progress. He is an engrossing character, who will fight tooth and nail for his partners, and take on the opposition with a blend of aggression and calmness. Many opponents have discovered his anger — in a verbal dose to assert his presence. He firmly believes in giving it back. His middle finger wagging act in Australia in 2012 was an example of how Virat would not accept things lying down," Lokapally wrote in his book.

"Repeatedly taunted by the Sydney crowd, he showed the middle finger. ‘I agree cricketers don’t have to retaliate. What when the crowd says the worst things about your mother and sister. The worst I’ve heard, never heard crap like that. EVER,’ he had tweeted. He was unrelenting in his stance and this was seen as the new trend in Indian cricket. There was a place for aggression, and young guns like Virat would not shy away from demonstrating it."

The Gambhir spat

 © getty

The Australian issue was quickly forgotten by his loyal fans back home. But Kohli being Kohli could not stay out of the headlines for the wrong reasons. His on-field argument with teammate Gautam Gambhir became a huge talking point as to whether the IPL would create an unnecessary problem for the national team.

"Virat once again exploded on the cricket field, but without a bat this time. The Chinnaswamy Stadium witnessed a Virat-Gambhir spat that left the audience stunned. Two Delhi and India teammates going at each other was an unsightly spectacle, but accepted as part of the game in modern times," the book reads.

"Virat, in this case, was steering RCB to the target of 155 in the IPL clash with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), when he lost his wicket. Having slammed two sixes off Delhi teammate Pradeep Sangwan, also his India under-19 colleague, Virat attempted to slice L. Balaji, but only holed out to Eoin Morgan."

"As he appeared to walk back to the dressing room, something snapped in him and he moved towards Gambhir, who was equally menacing, while confronting a livid Virat. Things had suddenly taken a turn for the worse. Another Delhi player, Bhatia, fielding at third man, sprinted to the spot of action and separated the two from a potentially explosive situation."

Defending Anushka Sharma

One of the main reasons Kohli is held in such high regard by the new generation of cricket fans in India is the honest way he approaches the game and his life. He is a new-age Indian who represents what most Indians believe, for those who could not find that kind of association with the clean-cut image of Tendulkar.

"Virat is not the one to change just for the sake of it. He has always believed in being transparent. He would protest strongly if he saw injustice. During the 2014 England tour, when girlfriend Anushka Sharma stayed in the team hotel, there was a furor in the media. ‘Not part of our culture,’ screamed the team manager Sunil Dev. However, Virat had taken prior permission, even as needless attention was paid to a private matter. It was not as if Virat had smuggled his girlfriend into the hotel in a clandestine manner. The team was aware and so was the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)."

He took to social media when he needed to stand up against bullying on the same network regarding the correlation between his performance and the presence of his then partner Anushka Sharma at the ground. In an Instagram post he came out all guns blazing against the "educated" lot.

"His Instagram post read, ‘Shame on those people who have been having a go at Anushka for the longest time and connecting every negative thing to her. Shame on those people calling themselves educated. Shame on blaming and making fun of her when she has no control over what I do with my sport. If anything she has only motivated and given me more positivity."

This was long time coming. Shame on these people that hide and take a dig. And I don’t need any respect for this post. Have some compassion and respect her. Think of how your sister or girlfriend or wife would feel if someone trolled them and very conveniently rubbished them in public," the excerpts published in the Hindu read.

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