Virat Kohli distanced his team from controversial comments by Hardik Pandya on a TV show that sparked social media outrage.
Captain Virat Kohli on Friday said the Indian team doesn’t stand by Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul for making “inappropriate” comments on women during a TV show but insisted that the controversy won’t affect the dressing room morale.
Kohli said that the availability of both Pandya and Rahul for the ODI series against Australia would depend on any action that the BCCI might take on Friday.
“From the Indian cricket team point of view, any inappropriate comments that are made in that scenario are something that we definitely don’t support. We definitely as the Indian cricket team do not support views like that and that has been communicated (to the two players),” said Kohli on the eve of the ODI series opener.
“I can definitely say that as the Indian cricket team and responsible cricketers we definitely don’t align with those views and those are purely individual views. The two concerned players (have) felt what has gone wrong and they have understood the magnitude of what’s happened.”
“Definitely it has to hit anyone hard, they will definitely understand the things that have not gone right. We are still waiting for a decision to be made,” he said.
When asked if this had an impact on the dressing room after a first-ever Test series’ win in Australia, and if it causes a distraction as the Men in Blue start their preparation towards the 2019 World Cup, Kohli said, “Whatever has happened is unfortunate but there are certain things that are out of your control.”
“You just need to sit back and wait and watch them unfold. From the combination and team balance point of view, yes when something like that happens you will have to think of what is the combination you need to go in with now.”
Kohli said the team remains in high spirits following the unprecedented success in the recently concluded Test series.
“You don’t have control over these things so you have to adjust with the situation and address it the way it comes to you and the way it unfolds. That’s how we’re looking at it. The combinations will have to be thought about once the decision comes out (from the BCCI) and from there on, we will see what needs to be done about the whole situation. We all are waiting just like everyone to understand what the decision will be.
“But from the Indian cricket team point of view this changes nothing in terms of our beliefs in the change room. It does nothing to the spirit that we’ve been able to create within the change room and these are purely individual opinions and something which as I said is inappropriate,” Kohli added.
The Committee of Administrators chief Vinod Rai on Thursday recommended a two-ODI ban on Pandya and Rahul but fellow COA member Diana Edulji referred the matter to the BCCI’s legal cell.
What’s the story?
Hardik Pandya had made an appearance with fellow teammate KL Rahul recently at an episode of ‘Koffee With Karan’.
Known for its casual format where celebs spill the beans, the cricketer had talked about everything from the sport to his dating life. In the episode, he had made misogynistic comments that have since landed him in hot water. Now, the cricketer has decided to break his silence on the matter.
On the show, Pandya boasted about hooking up with multiple women and also how open he has been about it with his parents. When asked why he didn’t ask women their name in a club, Pandya responded by saying, “I like to watch and observe how they (women) move. I’m little from the black side so I need to see how they move.”
Taking to Twitter, Pandya shared a tweet where he said he carefully reflected on his comments that he would like to apologise to anyone who he has hurt in any way.
He added that he had honestly gotten a bit carried away and said that he did not mean to hurt anyone’s sentiments in any way.
Here’s what his statement reads, “After reflecting on my comments on Koffee With Karan, I would like to apologise to everyone concerned who I may have hurt in any way. Honestly, I got a bit carried away with the nature of the show. In no way did I mean to disrespect or hurt anyone’s sentiments. Respect.”
This apology comes from the cricketer after his comments on relationships and women led him to face severe backlash on social media. In one instance, when Karan asked him why doesn’t he ask women’s name in clubs, the all-rounder answered that he likes to observe how they move.