New Delhi, May 6 (IANS) Former Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) captain Virat Kohli, who was fined 100 per cent of his match fee for his ugly on and off-field verbal fight with Lucknow Super Giants mentor Gautam Gambhir and pacer Naveen-ul-Haq, has written a letter to BCCI officials, saying that he didn’t say anything wrong to the members of his opposition team.
The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 match in Lucknow on May 1 was marred by an on-field altercation involving Kohli, Naveen, Amit Mishra and Gambhir.
The ugly clash between the two greatest Indian cricketers — Kohli and Gambhir — wasn’t a pleasant sight, and as a result of that, both of them were fined 100 per cent of their match fees for the altercation, which was deemed a Level 2 offence and in breach of IPL Code of Conduct’s Article 2.21. On the other hand, Afghanistan fast-bowler Naveen-ul-Haq was fined 50 per cent of his match fees.
Though, Kohli feels that his behaviour doesn’t warrant such a fine, although he won’t pay the fine as RCB has a policy of not deducting match fees from their players’ salaries for on-field offences.
In a report published by the Hindi daily Dainik Jagran, the former RCB captain has written a message to a few BCCI officials explaining the situation and expressing his disappointment after being handed a fine of 100 per cent match fee. Kohli reportedly said he did not say anything wrong to the LSG players and mentor during the fight.
The 34-year-old Kohli was aggressive in his celebration during the LSG-RCB match and was charged up against a couple of LSG players like Naveen-ul-Haq and Kyle Mayers. The witnesses to the verbal altercations claim that Kohli was hostile towards Naveen and Amit Mishra, who was batting with the Afghan cricketer towards the end of LSG’s chase, also complained to the umpires about Kohli’s behaviour.
Kohli had an ugly spat with Naveen during and after the match, and it is reported that it all started because of Mohammed Siraj’s bouncers and throws that were aimed at him.
The Afghani pacer was irked by the constant barrage of bouncers and throws that Kohli had asked Siraj to bowl. But in his message, Kohli denied doing that and said he did not direct Siraj to hit Naveen but instead only instructed him to bowl bouncers.
After the game, during the customary handshake, Kohli and Naveen had a heated exchange, and the former India captain reportedly complained about the pacer’s aggressive behaviour.
Soon after that, Kohli and Mayers were having a conversation when Gambhir stepped in and took the West Indies cricketer away. Kohli then told Gambhir to stay away from the matter, to which the LSG mentor replied that his players are like his family and he won’t tolerate anyone abusing them.
Since that day, a lot has been written and reported about that incident, and several videos and pictures of the ugly on-field fight between the two went viral on the internet.