We do not support inappropriate comments: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli expressed his displeasure at the comments made by Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul. (AFP Image)

India captain Virat Kohli has spoken on the furore surrounding Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul, explaining that the controversial comments made by the two cricketers on an Indian TV show do not reflect the views of the Indian cricket team and that those are nothing more than strictly personal opinions. (READ: Pandya and Rahul must be suspended pending proper enquiry – BCCI treasurer Chaudhary)

Rahul and Pandya appeared on a talk show on Sunday where some of the things they said were met with widespread criticism and social media backlash over perceived misogyny, racism and sexism, following which the BCCI issued showcause notices to both. (READ: BCCI’s CoA chief Vinod Rai recommends two-ODI ban on Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul)

“From the Indian cricket team point of view, any inappropriate comments that are made in that scenario are something that we definitely don’t support and the two concerned players felt what has gone wrong and they have understood the magnitude of what’s happened,” Kohli said at the SCG ahead of the opening ODI against Australia. “Definitely it has to hit anyone hard, they will definitely understand the things that have not gone right.

“We, definitely, as the Indian cricket team do not support views like that and that has been communicated. I can definitely say that as the Indian cricket team and responsible cricketers we definitely don’t align with those views and those are purely individual views.

The development has left Rahul and Pandya facing suspension. It is understood that while one of the CEO members, Vinod Rai is in favour of the suspension, BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhary has vouched for a more severe punishment. The social media did not take kindly to the inappropriate statements by Pandya and Rahul, with people calling it crass and cringeworthy. The BCCI issued showcause notices to both cricketers and while Pandya issues an apology, nothing has been heard from Rahul

“We are still waiting for a decision to be made but from the Indian cricket team point of view this changes nothing in terms of our beliefs in the change room. It does nothing to the spirit that we’ve been able to create within the change room and these are purely individual opinions and something as I said which is inappropriate,” Kohli said.

Holding back on the team announcement, Kohli pointed that since a decision regarding the two cricketers is awaited, India will have to re-think the team combination heading into the first ODI in Sydney on Saturday.

“From the combination and team balance point of view, yes, you’ll have to think about the combination you’ll need now,” Kohli said. “You don’t have control over these things so you have to address it the way it unfolds. That’s how we are looking at it, the combinations will have to be looked at when the decision comes out and from there on we’ll see what needs to be done about the whole situation.”