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Virat Kohli surprised at winning Spirit of Cricket Award

Virat Kohli received the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award for urging the crowd to support Steve Smith.
Virat Kohli received the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award for urging the crowd to support Steve Smith.
Modified 15 Jan 2020, 17:31 IST

After constantly being termed as someone who likes to have an argument with the opposition, Virat Kohli was surprised when he was awarded the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award.

Kohli had got this award for telling the crowd to not boo Steve Smith but to support him during India's 2019 World Cup clash against Australia.

Kohli said in a statement issued by the ICC,

"I'm surprised that I have got it, after many years of being under the scanner for the wrong things."

Kohli believed that no player deserved to get the kind of reception that Smith was getting from the crowd and thus it was only fair to make them understand that they aren't supposed to behave that way.

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Kohli continued,

"That moment was purely understanding an individual's situation. I don't think a guy who is coming out of a situation like that needs to be taken advantage of.
"We need to all take responsibility towards that. Intimidate the opposition, definitely try and have an upper hand but in a matter that is not targeting someone emotionally."

Kohli himself was under the scanner eight years ago when he was fined 50 per cent of the match fees for showing middle finger to the crowd, who were getting personal with him. But over the years he has developed into a true gentleman of the game.

Kohli and Smith have had some heated rivalries in the past, one being where the former almost accused the latter of being a cheat during Australia's tour of India in 2017. However, Kohli believed that there always is a line that should never be crossed.

He concluded,

"That is not acceptable at any level and people should be wary of that."
Published 15 Jan 2020, 14:09 IST
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