IPL 2024: Sunil Gavaskar takes a dig at Virat Kohli after his strike-rate critics rant

Former Indian captain's strike-rate has been a topic of discussion

By Web Desk
May 04, 2024
Sunil Gavaskar (L) and Virat Kohli (R). - Reuters/BCCI

India's batting legend Sunil Gavaskar took a dig at Virat Kohli's rant at his strike-rate critics during the 2024 Indian Premier League (IPL) and said that the commentators were just responding to what they were seeing in front of them during the matches.

Kohli's strike-rate has been a topic of discussion recently with many criticising him for being slow after the powerplay overs. Kohli responded with a fine 44-ball 70 while playing for Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) against Gujarat Titans on April 28.

Kohli came hard on commentators after the game and spoke openly to his critics. 

“All the people who talk about strike rates and me not playing spin well are the ones talking about this stuff. For me, it’s about winning games for the team and there’s a reason why you’ve done it for 15 years, you’ve done this day in and day out, you’ve won games for your teams,” he said during a post-match presentation of RCB and Gujarat Titans on April 28.

Gavaskar, however, didn't like his comments. On the pre-show ahead of the RCB vs GT clash. The Indian legend said that the commentators were questioning Kohli just because he was going at a strike-rate of 118 and then getting out in the 14th or 15th over.

"Commentators questioned only when the strike rate was 118. I'm not too sure. I don't watch too many matches, so I don't know what the other commentators have said otherwise. But if you have a strike of 118 and then you get out in the 14th or the 15th with a strike-rate of 118, I mean, if you want applause for that, that's a little bit different. That's different," said Gavaskar.

Gavaskar would criticise Kohli, questioning why he was reacting to outside noise if he claimed to ignore it. The Indian cricket legend remarked that the commentators hold no personal biases and are merely fulfilling their professional duties.

"When you talk about all these guys talk about, oh we don't care about outside noise, acha. Then why are you replying to any outside noise or whatever it is. We all played a bit of cricket, not a lot of cricket. We don't have agendas. We speak about what we see. We don't necessarily have any likes and dislikes. Even if we have likes and dislikes, we actually speak on what is happening," said Gavaskar.