Australia didn't sledge Kohli to protect IPL contracts: Michael Clarke
Former Australian batsman Michael Clarke believes the Aussies succumbed to pressure when India toured down under in 2018-19. According to Clarke, the Tim Paine-led side held back and did not get the better of Indians during the Test series. He further reiterated that the Australians were "scared" to sledge Virat Kohli in the fear of losing IPL contracts. Here is more.
'Australians sucked up to India', says Clarke
"I feel that Australian cricket, and probably every other team over a little period, went the opposite and actually sucked up to India. They were too scared to sledge Kohli or the other Indian players because they had to play with them," Clarke said.
Australia looked depleted without David Warner and Steve Smith
India became the first ever Asian team to register a Test series victory on the Australian soil. They also won their maiden Boxing Day Test, having defeated Australia by 137 runs. Following the 2-1 series victory, the visitors defeated Australia in the ODI series too. Australia won one match each across every format (1st T20I, 2nd Test and 1st ODI) in the ten-match tour.
The Australians were worried about IPL contracts
Clarke revealed that the Australians wanted their IPL contracts to be unperturbed and hence, they lacked aggression. "The players were like: 'I'm not going to sledge Kohli, I want him to pick me for Bangalore so I can make my $1 million for my six weeks'," he said. He added, "That's where our cricket became softer or not hard as we're accustomed to seeing."
Cummins became the most expensive foreign buy in IPL history
Fast bowler Pat Cummins grabbed the highest bid in the IPL 2020 auction after Kolkata Knight Riders bought him up for Rs. 15.5 crore. Maxwell was purchased by Kings XI Punjab for a whopping Rs. 10.75 crore, while Mumbai Indians picked up Nathan Coulter-Nile for Rs. 8 crore. Aaron Finch was sold to RCB for Rs. 4.40 crore. Warner and Smith were retained earlier.
Controversies have surrounded Kohli on quite a few occasions
From showing middle finger in front of the SCG crowd to the infamous "brain-fade" duel, Virat Kohli has often been associated with controversies against Australia. In the 2014-15 series as well, the Johnson-Kohli tussle made headlines. This time around, the incumbent Australian skipper Tim Paine replied to Kohli's banters in a rather subtle manner, which made Australia look timid.