As India took on the defending champions Australia in the biggest match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 on Sunday and sent their bowlers on a leather chase at The Oval, Steve Smith was sent to field near the boundary. Immediately after, Smith copped a few chants and boos from the Indian fans closeby.
Smith and David Warner were banned for an year over their roles in the ball-tampering scandal which took place in the Cape Town Test last year. Both of them returned to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 and were picked for the ongoing World Cup.
Smith was first booed when he smashed a hundred during a warm-up match against England. Against West Indies, Smith was booed for the second time when he raised his bat to celebrate a fifty.
However, Indian skipper Virat Kohli showed his classy side when he asked a section of the crowd to stop booing at Steve Smith. Kohli instead asked the crowd to clap for the former Australia skipper.
Despite having an acrimonious history with Kohli, Smith came forward and in a sweet gesture, he gave a tap on his back. The moment was also applauded by the commentators. It was another validation of why cricket is being called as a “gentleman’s game”.
Here’s the video:
With India fans giving Steve Smith a tough time fielding in the deep, @imVkohli suggested they applaud the Australian instead.
— ICC (@ICC) June 9, 2019