Former England captain Michael Vaughan has lashed out at Pakistan’s Mohammad Hafeez over his ‘selfish’ remark on star Indian batter Virat Kohli. Hafeez’s comments came after Kohli equalled legendary batter Sachin Tendulkar’s record of 49th ODI ton against South Africa on Sunday.
However, Kohli remained unbeaten on 101 off 121 balls on a tricky Eden Gardens track to help India post 326/5 in 50 overs. He showed great maturity to bat through the innings and guide the team to a decent total as well. But, Hafeez wasn’t happy with how Kohli paced his knock and shared that he saw selfishness in his batting.
He remarked on a cricket show ‘Top Cricket Analysis’: “I saw a sense of selfishness in Virat Kohli’s batting and this happened for the third time in this World Cup. In the 49th over, he was looking to take a single to reach his own hundred and he didn’t put the team first. Rohit Sharma could have played selfish cricket too, but he didn’t because he is playing for Team India and not for himself.”
Meanwhile, referring to Mohammad Hafeez’s comments as “utter nonsense”, Michael Vaughan lauded Virat Kohli for his knock on a difficult wicket. “Come on @MHafeez22 !!! India have hammered 8 teams playing great cricket .. @imVkohli now has 49 tons and his last was an anchor role innings on a tricky pitch .. His team won by over 200 !!!! This is utter nonsense .. #CWC2023 #India #Pakistan,” the cricketer-turned-commentator wrote on X.
Come on @MHafeez22 !!! India have hammered 8 teams playing great cricket .. @imVkohli now has 49 tons and his last was an anchor role innings on a tricky pitch .. His team won by over 200 !!!! This is utter nonsense .. #CWC2023 #India #Pakistan https://t.co/Foh3hhz3RE
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) November 7, 2023
However, Virat Kohli is currently the second-highest run-getter in the ODI World Cup after South Africa’s Quinton de Kock. He has amassed 543 runs in eight games, seven short of de Kock, at an average of 108.60 as well. Virat Kohli opined on why he took a cautious approach against South Africa.
“People from the outside probably look at the game in a different way. When the openers start in that fashion when the ball is new, you feel like wow, this is a belter and everyone has to keep going that way. But the conditions changed with the old ball, the pitch slows down. Message from the management was simple: I bat deep, the guys around me they bat with me, string in partnerships, express themselves and keep doing the job that the team wants me to do. That’s my role, has always been my role. I was just happy from that perspective because on pitches like these, if you get out, you can always look back and say 295, maybe we could have got 320-325. Once you are above 315, we knew it’s above par and we are in a comfortable situation,” Virat Kohli concluded.