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Wasim Jaffer hails Virat Kohli for winning ICC Spirit of Cricket Award

Kohli though expressed surprise after receiving his award for he has been in the headlines for the wrong reasons like showing aggression on the field.

Virat Kohli asks fans to not boo Steve Smith
Virat Kohli asks fans to not boo Steve Smith. (Photo Source: Twitter)

India captain Virat Kohli tasted the most bitter loss in his captaincy in limited-overs cricket when Australia blew away his team by 10 wickets in the first ODI in Mumbai on Tuesday. But he had a good news following as the International Cricket Council (ICC) honoured him with its Spirit of Cricket Award 2019 for his sporting gesture vis-a-vis the crowds who were booing Australian cricketer Steve Smith at the ICC World Cup in England last year.

It so happened that the Indian spectators were booing the Australian over his involvement in the Sandpapergate ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in 2018 for which he was banned along with a few other team-mates, including David Warner.

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Kohli, who was batting in the middle then, showed his dissatisfaction with the fans and asked them to back Smith instead. The gesture won hearts all over and even Smith acknowledged it later.

Wasim Jaffer recalls Michael Clarke’s words on late Philip Hughes

Veteran batsman Wasim Jaffer took to the Twitter to praise Kohli’s feat. He also recalled a quote from former Australia cricketer Michael Clarke who had said after the unfortunate death of his friend Philip Hughes while batting: “Philip’s spirit will act as the custodian for the spirit of cricket.”

The 41-year-old domestic cricket giant then said that it was a poetic coincidence that Kohli received the spirit of cricket award for his gesture towards Smith who had only taken up the baton of captaincy from Clarke. He congratulated Kohli and other winners of the ICC awards. India’s dashing opener and vice-captain in limited-overs Rohit Sharma received the 2019 ODI Cricketer of the Year.

Kohli though expressed surprise after receiving his award for he has been in the headlines for the wrong reasons like showing aggression on the field. “I’m surprised that I have got it, after many years of being under the scanner for the wrong things,” he said in a statement issued by the ICC.

Meanwhile, a new controversy was doing the rounds in Indian cricket after Kohli came out to bat at No.4 in the match in Mumbai. After the thrashing, the captain is likely to return to his more familiar No.3 position in the second game in Rajkot on Friday.

Watch: Irfan Pathan’s interview post his retirement

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