Virat Kohli's altercation with Australian captain Tim Paine was the highlight of the second Test that the hosts won by 146 runs in Perth. Former Australian pace spearhead Mitchell Johnson on Wednesday slammed the visiting captain for being "disrespectful" and "silly" at the Optus Stadium. "At the end of the match, you should be able to look each other in the eyes, shake hands and say 'great contest'," Johnson wrote in a column for Fox Sports. "Virat Kohli could not do that with Tim Paine, shaking the Australian captain's hand but barely making eye contact with him. To me, that is disrespectful.
"Kohli gets away with more than most cricketers simply because he is Virat Kohli and he gets placed on a pedestal but this Test left the Indian captain looking silly," he added.
Johnson's comments did not go well with Indian cricket fans as they blasted the Australian on Twitter.
Here are some reactions:
??????????????????what can be more hilarious than an australian cricketer (especially mj ) preaching about dignity and sportsmanship ? ANS: NONE— sri goutham (@gr3101997) December 18, 2018
He bowls to left he bowls to the right... I forgot the song you should remember as you heard it many times you one series wonder stop getting attention on posting about a man who is 1000 times better then you as cricketer and human being.@MitchJohnson398— sayed sadiq (@sayedsadiq5) December 18, 2018
Mitchell Johnson is still not over the fact that he got absolutely man handled by a bloke single handedly at home just one year after he was dismantling the poms.— Akki (@CrickPotato1) December 18, 2018
Still remember him coming upto bowl with all his efforts only to see ball getting smashed all over the park by kohli
I am sure Kohli will be running out of tissues because Johnson doesn't like him..— Sanket Kanoo (@SanketK3) December 18, 2018
Hr destroyed you in 2014 and you can't get over that. You have to stop being so emotional, because that is how Virat is, and have always been. He is never a person like that off the field!— Mohammad Hasham (@MhHasham) December 18, 2018
You all are double stds, yes @imVkohli may not be right on all accounts but here he is representating his country he will be fierce, competitive and tough like it or leave it! he said he won't start anything as in won't cross the line and he has not!— Aks08nov (@Aks08nov1) December 18, 2018
After the match both Kohli and Paine attempted to play down their on-field banter, which was often picked up by stump microphones.
"As long as there is no swearing the line doesn't get crossed," Kohli said. "And no personal attacks."
Paine also said his sparring with Kohli did not get out of hand, adding that he admired Indian skipper's passion for Test cricket.
"It was a highly competitive Test match from both teams and there was a lot on the line, with both teams desperately wanting to win," Paine said.
"It (Kohli's behaviour) was not (worrying) to me, I love it and I'm sure it was great to watch."
Johnson also blasted Kohli's failure to acknowledge the crowd's applause after Peter Handscomb took a controversial catch to dismiss him for a sublime 123 in the first innings.
"To me the catch was given out so you accept it and move on and as a player who has scored a hundred you acknowledge the standing ovation," he said.
"After play he came out and said he had 'no reason to respect' me. He lost me then," said Johnson.
Johnson and Kohli have history. During India's last tour of Australia in 2014, Johnson had aimed the stumps, but the ball hit Kohli, who was standing at the striker's end thus triggering a few verbal exchanges during the Test match at MCG.
(With AFP inputs)