Virat Kohli Wins ICC ‘Spirit of Cricket’ Award
India captain Virat Kohli was on Wednesday, 15 January awarded with the ICC ‘Spirit of Cricket’ award for his gesture of trying to stop the fans from booing Steve Smith during a World Cup match.
Smith was returning to international cricket from a one-year suspension for ball-tampering at that time.
The crowd at the Oval stadium in England started booing the Australian batsman when he was fielding in the ground. Virat, who was batting at that time, turned towards the crowd and gestured them to stop booing and instead clap for him.
India captain Kohli was surprised to win the Spirit of Cricket Award and explained his reasons for backing Smith the way he did.
“I’m surprised that I have got it, after many years of being under the scanner for the wrong things. It is part of camaraderie that sportsmen must have with each other. That moment was purely understanding an individual’s situation,” Virat said.
“I don’t think a guy who is coming out of a situation like that needs to be taken advantage of. You can sledge, can have have banter on the field, you say things to the opposition in wanting to beat them. But booing someone is not in the spirit of any sport, I don’t endorse it.”Virat Kohli, India Captain
“Also, that should not be a representation of our fans and what we stand as a cricketing nation, a sporting nation. We need to all take responsibility towards that,” he said.
Intimidate the opposition, definitely try and have an upper hand but in a matter that is not targeting someone emotionally. That is not acceptable at any level and people should be wary of that,” he added.
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