INDIA'S combative batsman Virat Kohli said he gave the finger to the Sydney crowd yesterday after being taunted by vile comments regarding his mother and sister.
Just as it seemed relations between Australia and India were developing positively after the Monkeygate affair in 2008, tensions have risen again in Sydney following the incident.
Kohli was fielding near the boundary in front of a group of rowdy Australian fans when he flipped the bird, and was caught by photographers.
Kohli defended his actions last night on Twitter, writing: “i agree cricketers dont have to retaliate. what when the crowd says the worst things about your mother and sister. the worst ive heard”.
Kohli found some support from England cricketer Kevin Pietersen who tweeted, "@imVkohli ha ha ha ha ha!!! Welcome to Australia buddy!!" and "that's the way it is mate.. Beat them & they start abusing their own!! #fickle."
Kohli has a reputation as one of the team’s aggressors but could face sanctioning from the Board of Control in India for his outburst.
Both sides have made a point of highlighting the progress in relations between them since the infamous Test four years ago when Harbhajan Singh was accused of racially abusing Andrew Symonds, and then captain Anil Kumble claimed after the match that Australia did not play within the spirit of the game.
But Kohli’s finger suggests some Indian players still feel far from welcome in this country.
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