Former Aussie skipper Ricky Ponting has blasted sections of the Sydney Cricket Ground crowd who allegedly booed Indian captain Virat Kohli when he went out to bat in India’s first innings of the fourth Test.
‘If it was booing, then it’s absolutely disgraceful. I said that in the Perth Test as well. Show some respect,’ said Ponting during an interview on Seven, reported by ESPNCricinfo.
When Kohli walked to the wicket on day one of the fourth and final Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground, he was reportedly greeted with a rally of boos from sections of the crowd at the SCG, following chants of ‘Kohli is a w—-er’ that greeted him at Melbourne and a chorus of boos aimed at him in the second Test at Perth.
Other commentators in Australia weighed in with their disgust for the crowd behaviour, with commentator Tim Lane calling it ‘poor’, ‘graceless’ and ‘classless’.
‘(Kohli) has not done anything wrong, he has just been too good,’ added Lane.
‘We should be better than that as a nation. I didn’t like it,’said Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts. ‘We talk about making Australians proud, we talk about the fact our goal is to win, but our non-negotiable expectation is to compete with honour and I’d urge our fans to support the game with honour. Respect is a really core foundation of the game.’
India leads the series against Australia 2-1, with the final Test at Sydney clearly going India’s way after the first two days of play. India retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy following their victory in the third Test at the MCG, which ensured that Australia could not win the series.
Kohli is currently the third-highest run-scorer in the Test series with 282 runs, behind teammates Cheteshwar Pujara (521) and Rishabh Pant (350), and ahead of the joint fourth-highest run-scorers, Australia’s Travis Head (217) and India’s Ajinkya Rahane (217). The Indians have all played seven innings, while most of the Australian batters have only batted six times as their seventh innings only started late on Friday afternoon.
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