Recently, former Australian captain Michael Clarke made a statement that the Australian players were too scared to sledge Indian captain Virat Kohli during the 2018-19 Test series as they were afraid of losing their IPL contracts. India made history under Virat Kohli’s captaincy by winning their maiden Test series in Australia. However, Clarke feels that the home team players were too soft against Kohli because they didn’t want to lose million dollar IPL deals.
Australia’s Test captain Tim Paine has come up with a fitting reply to the former skipper’s controversial comments. During a recent interview, Paine mentioned that he did not notice his team trying to be nice to Virat Kohli or taking a step back. The Australian skipper revealed that they had persisted on not provoking Virat in any way because of him being at his best when someone tries to get under his skin.
“I certainly didn't notice too many people being that nice to Virat or not trying to get him out or anything like that. I thought everyone who had the ball in their hand or when we were batting were trying their absolute best to win the game for Australia. I'm not sure who was going easy on him; we certainly had a thing where we didn't want to provoke any fight with him because we think that's when he plays at his best," quoted Tim Paine.
Tim Paine also talked about an instance from the documentary released on Amazon Prime ‘The Test’ where the two captains engage in a healthy banter during the Perth Test match. The Aussie skipper went on to mention that he was in a nothing to lose situation as he was not going to be a part of the IPL and believed that all his players gave their 100% in every Test match of the series.
“Who knows what will happen this series and, as we saw in the documentary, there was still quite a lot of heat in some of those games. I certainly wasn’t holding back, but again the IPL’s not a huge draw for me at the moment, so I had nothing to lose. But anytime our guys go out and play a Test match for Australia, they’ll be giving their absolute all and I’m pretty sure they’re not thinking about an IPL contract when they’re running in, bowling to Virat,” he added.
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