What’s the story?
KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir defended his aggressive behaviour on the field, claiming that being highly vocal and competitive was part of the Delhi culture and even cited the example of an equally expressive Virat Kohli to ascertain his view that cricketers from the state are just brought up that way.
In response to the question raised by Jatin Sapru as to whether Delhi people abuse more than the others, as part of KKR’s ‘Knight Club, featuring Breakfast with GG, aimed at improving the franchise’s connect with the fans on Twitter, Gambhir replied candidly claiming that there was nothing wrong in saying a few words to the opposition in order to unsettle them as long as it didn’t become personal.
Gautam Gambhir’s KKR side is set to take on Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore in the second IPL fixture of the day on Sunday in what promises to be an electrifying fixture. The match also brings together the two skippers, who had ugly on-field spat during an IPL fixture at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore back in 2013.
Both cricketers were charged with breaching the Level 1 of IPL Code of Conduct and were warned to not repeat such acts in the future. Though the duo have maintained that they share a cordial relationship and that the incident was a one-off caused by the heat of the moment, individually, both Kohli and Gambhir have ensured that they remain true to their aggressive nature on the field.
The heart of the matter
While KKR’s fortunes have drastically improved under Gambhir’s captaincy, there have been criticism from some quarters that he often crosses the line on the field with his highly vocal nature, mostly aimed at the opposition but also having a go at his teammates at times when things aren’t going necessarily in his team’s favour.
Gambhir, however, feels that it is simply down to the way in which people from Delhi are brought up amidst bustling lifestyle of India’s capital city. Though he admitted that there are times when he does lose his temper, he insisted that words spoken on the field are well within the rights of the players as long as one is not attacking the opponent personally.
Gambhir also claimed that he is a much more relaxed person off the field who likes to chill out and spend time with his daughter when he is not busy playing or training.
Sunday’s much-awaited fixture will see KKR trying to keep pace with runaway leaders Mumbai Indians at the top of the IPL standings while RCB will be hoping to build on their win against Gujarat Lions on Tuesday.
Interestingly, KKR’s previous fixture was also against the Suresh Raina-led side, but this time around KKR ended up on the losing side thanks to some brilliant hitting by the skipper.
Gambhir and Kohli are two skippers who like to see their team give their all for the cause and there have been times that the enthusiasm has got the better of them. Though the stakes are high, it is never to see players involved in verbal duos on the field of play.
Gambhir may put down his aggressive nature to the Delhi culture, but it's his responsibility as a player and skipper, who is looked upon by millions of youngsters hoping to emulate him in the future, that he doesn’t cross the line in his efforts to ensure victory for his side.