Australian crowd wouldn’t want to rile up Kohli: Adam Gilchrist
Adam Gilchrist has warned the Australian crowd from getting under Virat Kohli's skin. (Getty Images)

Former Australia wicketkeeper batsman Adam Gilchrist has warned the home crowd from provoking Virat Kohli when India tours Down Under later this year. Kohli’s India is supposed to play four Tests, three ODIs and three T20Is, and it is believed that the Australian spectators, who love to get under players’ skins would try and needle the Indian captain.

One of the most infamous incidents from Kohli’s decade-long career occurred when, agitated by the continuous heckling from the crowd at the Sydney Cricket Ground [SCG], he was captured flicking the finger during India’s Australia tour of 2011-12. It was just the sixth match of his infant Test career and the incident drew widespread attention.

Gilchrist however, mentioned that Kohli has come a long way since that incident at the SCG and the move to provoke the Indian captain might just backfire.

“The Aussie crowd always want to go under the skin of opposition players. Virat has matured to a great deal since that last tour,” Gilchrist told PTI during an interaction in Bengaluru. “He (Kohli) looks to me a guy who likes challenges when the chips are down. Perhaps, we don’t want to upset him because he is the best player in the world.”

Gilchrist, Man of the Match, during the final of Australia’s World Cup triumph praised Kohli’s captaincy despite the team’s struggles overseas, while adding that he sees nothing but positives in Kohli’s future as captain of the Indian team.

“What I admire about Virat’s captaincy is his tenacity and the way he drags his team with him just by being positive,” Gilchrist said. “Tactically, I cannot comment because I have not watched enough content, except the highlights. Virat is that guy who is passionate about leading his team and the nation forward. I see positive things about his captaincy and leadership.”

Expressing his views on India’s ongoing series against England, Gilchrist pointed out that the team needs to be mentally strong to ensure better performances in series abroad. With a 61-run defeat in the fourth Test, India lost the series to England, and are fighting to avert a 1-4 scoreline in the fifth Test at the Oval.

“It is challenging playing overseas. I do believe India have a strong bowling unit and some quality batsmen, including the best batsmen in the world, Virat Kohli. They have the potential to win overseas, perhaps it is just mind more than the body,” Gilchrist, who played 97 Tests and 287 ODIs for Australia, said.