Terming Indian speedster Ishant Sharma’s controversial verbal duels with the Sri Lankans a “pathetic display of aggression”, the former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi, has said, Test skipper Virat Kohli needs to control his own belligerence and be a role model for his players in the future.
It may be recalled that Ishant played a key role in India’s series clinching win in Colombo, bagging eight wickets in the match, to join the 200 wicket-takers club. But his continuous verbal duels on the field not only cost him 65 per cent of his match fee in the second game, but a second offence at the SSC in the third and final Test attracted an ICC ban for one Test match.
An angry Bedi called it an unfortunate series of events. “See they talked about aggression and then an Ishant gets banned for a match. Is this what you want on a cricket field? This is pathetic display of aggression. And remember this has nothing to do with Virat’s aggression, who is just giving statement after statement and trying to sell his aggression through words,” Bedi told PTI in an interview.
“He (Kohli) did a very good job in the context of this series but he needs to control his aggro. There is always one camera which is focused on the captain, so he has to be an exceptionally good role model. You be aggressive with your bat, ball and fielding not with your mouth.
“These are very early days as far as his captaincy is concerned. There is so much more to be done. And there are far too many lacunas in the Indian team. We would be absolutely blind if we don’t see the shortcomings now,” Bedi said.