Australia’s assistant coach David Saker termed Kohli’s accusation as “absurd” and “offensive”
Published - Mar 9, 2017 5:28 pm | Updated - Mar 9, 2017 5:28 pm
The Virat Kohli-Steve Smith controversy is taking new turns every day, with more and more people from the cricket fraternity joining in the saga and voicing their opinions. And now Australia’s assistant coach David Saker has also joined the bandwagon. He was quoted saying that Australia retain respect for Virat Kohli despite the India captain’s “absurd” and “offensive” allegations against Steve Smith.
The four-Test series between the world’s top two teams saw on-field matters going off the field after Smith gestured to his dressing room for assistance on whether to review an lbw decision against him in the second Test at Bengaluru.
Smith later admitted his mistake but called it “brain fade” but Australia dismissed Kohli’s charge that they had repeatedly resorted to the practice in the second Test. “It’s really offensive,” Saker told reporters. “It’s probably the worst thing you can be called is cheats, that’s an offensive thing.
“We’ve never done anything like that and we never will.”
Saker, who was previously with the England team as their bowling coach, said the Australian dressing room was surprised when Smith made the gesture.
“It’s pretty much absurd I think. When Steven Smith did look up, we were more horrified than anyone else because we’d never seen that before,” Saker said.
“We haven’t got any elaborate sign system and when he did do that it was quite a surprise to us.”
On the other hand, Peter Handscomb, who played second fiddle to Smith during the incident, took the blame upon himself and said that it was him who advised Smith to seek dressing room help from non-striker’s end.
“(I was) just completely unaware that you couldn’t do that,” the 25-year-old said on his Twitter handle.
After comments and clarifications from both the parties, ICC’s final decision on the incident was what everyone waited for. But the International Cricket Council (ICC) opted not to level any charge against either Smith or Kohli.
The teams will meet again when the third Test gets underway at Ranchi on March 16.