"Test match is not a learning school," said Sunil Gavaskar after India drew the third Test in Melbourne earlier this week and lost the four-Test series against Australia 2-0. The BCCI thinks otherwise. With the fourth Test in Sydney coming up next week, the Board is not worried that Kohli may continue to be on a short fuse.('Kohli's Aggression Can be Counter-Productive for India')
The India versus Australia Test series has been fraught with frayed tempers. The Indians the on-field squabbles in Adelaide and the third Test in MCG saw Kohli repeatedly having altercations with Australian players. Kohli traded words with Mitchell Johnson. The Indian vice-captain complained that the Aussies called him "spoilt brat."(Kohli Takes on Johnson in Verbal Battle)
Gavaskar has been critical of India's sledging tactics. "The Indians started this and they must end this. The Australians have been unusually quiet because they are still mourning the death of Phillip Hughes. It is futile to sledge the Aussies because they don't get affected," Gavaskar said.('Kohli Can Dominate Next Era')
With Kohli now becoming the official captain after MS Dhoni's Test retirement, the circumstances may demand that the prolific batsman remains in control of his volatile temper. The BCCI is not really worried.('Kohli Needs to Control Himself')
BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel, who does all the talking, cricketing or non-cricketing on behalf of a rudderless Board, told the Indian Express: "Sledging is a part and parcel of the Australian team. Virat's sledging is the reaction and not the action (Gavaskar said the opposite). Why he didn't do it in England, South Africa or even at home? Sledging is creation of Australia. It is not great concern.
"Virat is a young boy, who will answer the questions that are been asked of him. He is not a boy who will take it (quietly), but at the same time he will learn."
Kohli led India in the first Test at Adelaide and was fined for violating ICC's Code of Conduct. Interestingly, he seems to be getting the backing of team director Ravi Shastri, who is happy with the team's aggressive mindset.
"Care two hoots about scorelines," Shastri had said, supporting the team's fighting ability. Shastri feels this team will make the top three in 12 months. Patel seems to have a similar view.
"Every series loss is a concern but we have a young group of boys. We are confident that we will do well in the coming year. They have shown the promise, and it's just a matter of experience. I'm sure under Kohli's captaincy, this team will do well," the BCCI secretary said.