The tense Tim Paine versus Virat Kohli narrative took an unexpected turn on Monday evening despite the Indian captain not being directly involved.
Following 24 hours of skirmish and lukewarm sledging between the skippers, Paine landed the knockout blow when he whispered to Murali Vijay “I know he (Kohli) is your captain, but you can’t seriously like him as a bloke?”.
This cheeky sledge from Tim Paine to Murali Vijay – picked up on stump mic – was the Australian captain’s cheeky barb that followed his counterpart’s dismissal.
Virat Kohli was seen laughing in dressing room after Tim Paine’s comment about him but he was unable to reply.
Paine delivered his subtle sledge with a wry smile on his face following the dismissal of Kohli for 17 off 40 deliveries.
The feels when the ? dismisses the ?;
Tim Paine and Virat Kohli have wasted no time resuming their running commentary in Perth, prompting a rebuke from umpire Chris Gaffaney on the fourth morning of the second Domain Test.
Having engaged in a verbal exchange late on day three of the second Test, Australia and India’s respective captains again traded barbs during Monday’s morning session.
Virat Kohli and Tim Paine were giving each other some choice words on day four of the second Test.
The two were even seen and heard sledging each other on Sunday when Paine was batting in the final session.
“If he messes it up, it’s 2-0,” Kohli was heard saying, which was picked up by the microphone after he and his teammates made a loud caught-behind appeal for Paine in the final over of the day.
Paine did not hold himself back and replied “You’ve got to bat first, big head”.
The stump microphones picked up Virat Kohli saying, “if he messes it up, it’s 2-0,” while referring to the Test series lead. Tim Paine promptly replied: “You’ve got to bat first, big head”.#AUSvIND #Kohli #INDvAUS #PerthTest #ViratKohli https://t.co/bwmy5rSTOK pic.twitter.com/fMjOZjhHyG
— CriketGeek (@CriketGeek) December 16, 2018
“You’re the one that lost it yesterday. Why are you trying to be cool today?” Paine was heard saying to Kohli.
Umpire Chris Gaffney was not impressed with how the two were behaving in the middle and was heard saying something on the lines of “That’s enough, that’s enough. Come on, play the game. You guys are the captains,” on the stump microphone.
Virat Kohli and Tim Paine are back at it!
The two have locked horns again as tension builds on the 4th day of the 2nd Test.
— Fox Cricket (@FoxCricket) December 17, 2018
Paine defended himself. “There’s no swearing,” he said.
Paine didn’t seem too pleased at being told to pipe down, claiming there was nothing wrong with what he was doing.
“We’re allowed to talk. We can have a conversation. There’s no swearing,” Paine said.
Just because the talk died down, the animosity didn’t. But Gaffaney reminded skippers of their roles.
An increasingly fired-up Kohli appeared to plead his case to square-leg umpire Kumar Dharmasena as Paine and Usman Khawaja continued to extend Australia’s second-innings lead.
Kohli and Paine continued to exchange words as they walked towards their respective dressing rooms.
“Tim just asked him where he was going for dinner,” Nathan Lyon said. “I’ve played enough cricket against Virat to know what he’s like. Virat’s Virat. Virat Kohli is a great player. He plays on emotion. I’m not worried about what he’s doing or India’s doing.”
“I reckon it’s a sign Kohli is starting to lose it,” former Test bowler Damien Fleming said on SEN radio.
Former Test captain Ricky Ponting said on Seven he had no issue with the exchanges, noting that nothing aggressive or explicit had been detected.
Tensions bubbled on day three when Kohli and teammates appealed vociferously for a caught-behind appeal in the final over, desperate to dismiss Paine. It was turned down and India had no interest in reviewing but stump microphones picked up Kohli having a dig at his counterpart.
Former Australian paceman Mitchell Johnson revealed what Kohli was saying.
“Speaking to a couple of the boys, Virat was going to the umpire and telling the umpire that ‘Tim Paine is talking to me. Can you tell him to stop?’ That type of thing,” Johnson told Fox Cricket.
“Which I find quite interesting with what happened yesterday.”