AUS v IND 2018-19: Virat Kohli says that the team is ready for harmless banter; but won’t cross the line

"I think a bit of banter there is not harmful", said Kohli.

With the first Test between Australia and India set to commence on Dec 6, marking the beginning of the 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar Trophy; both sides have been talking a lot about the on-field banter and Virat Kohli addressed the same issue during a chat with reporters.

The India and Australia rivalry have been never short of spice and on-field chitchat, with the Steve Smith ‘brain fade’ moment and Maxwell mocking Kohli’s shoulder surgery during the 2017 series.

However, the Australians have been pegged back ever since the ball tampering incident in South Africa and the Longstaff review of the Australian cricketing culture.

The Australian team is looking at the India series as a chance to re-connect with the public, on and off the field.

India, on the other hand, is in the last leg of the defining overseas tours and are under pressure to register their first-ever Test series victory down under after losing series in South Africa and England.

Kohli has been part of some banter with the Australian players during his tours down under in 2011-12 and 2014-15, recently told the reporters, "I don't see stuff happening in the past where both teams have crossed the line but still it's a competitive sport at the end of the day and international cricket. We don't expect guys to come in, bowl and walk back.

He added, "There are going to be times when you have to put the batsmen under pressure, not necessarily crossing the line but just get into their heads, which you expect from any side in the world, not just Australia. So I think it is going to be there but it's not going to be at the level it happened in the past, where both teams have lost control. But the competitiveness will be there because you eventually want to get guys out."

"If the situation is going your way and you understand that you're up against an important guy in the opposition, you will go hard at that person, be it in your body language or just putting in a word or two. But I don't see anything radical happening because the skill set is high and we would not necessarily need to get into anything but during times when situations are difficult, you find ways to upset the batsman's rhythm. I think a bit of banter there is not harmful," Kohli signed off.

(inputs from


By Jatin Sharma - 05 Dec, 2018

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