India skipper Virat Kohli on Monday addressed the media ahead of his team’s departure for 35 days tour to West Indies. Responding to questions about his alleged rift with vice-captain Rohit Sharma, Kohli said that such reports are baffling and disrespectful.
“In my opinion, its baffling. It’s absolutely ridiculous to read these kinds of stuff, that comes out there. I have been to public events where we have been praised and here we are feeding off lies, overlooking facts, turning a blind eye to all good things that happened and creating fantasies and scenarios in our head. We want to accept that this is the truth,” Virat insisted that his relationship with Rohit is fine.
Adding fuel to all the speculations was a cryptic Instagram post by Kohli’s wife Anushka Sharma, which was later deleted.
“I have seen this for too long now. Bringing personal lives into the picture. It’s disrespectful after a moment. I have played the game for 11 years and Rohit has played for 10 years (12 years) and it’s bizarre that people are creating this stuff from outside,” Kohli said.
When asked about the dressing room environment, Kohli revealed that the team had stuck together at crucial times to stay at the top for a while across formats. “I have heard a lot. If the team atmosphere wasn’t good then we couldn’t have performed like we have in the last 2-3 years. I know our dressing room atmosphere and the trust factor. Our journey from number 7 to number 1 in Test cricket and consistent performance in ODIs could not have happened if the camaraderie had not been there,” he said.
Also, when asked about whether he would like to meet Rohit after these rumors, Kohli said, “If I don’t like a person then you will see that on my face. I always praised Rohit because I genuinely believe he is that good. It’s baffling. I don’t know who is benefitting from this. We are getting Indian cricket on top and some people are trying to bring it down. Within team everyone can see the camaraderie and friendship. You can’t play with that kind of passion if people don’t get along with each other. It is as simple as that. It is time that we focus on taking Indian cricket forward and not on things that are not even there at the moment.”
India will start their ICC World Test Championship campaign with the first of the two Tests to be played against the West Indies. Speaking asked about the Test series, the Indian captain said, “Test Championship will provide more exposure to Test cricket. This will be challenging and exciting for the players and they will learn from the experience.”