Virat Kohli 2019 World Cup gesture | Sportsmonks

Virat Kohli 2019 World Cup gesture

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli 2019 World Cup gesture

Flashback to Virat Kohli’s Heartwarming Gesture at the 2019 World Cup

As cricket enthusiasts gear up for the 2023 ICC World Cup, it’s worth revisiting a touching moment from the 2019 World Cup that showcased the spirit of the game. During a match against Australia at the Oval, former Indian captain Virat Kohli displayed a remarkable act of sportsmanship by urging fans to applaud Australian star Steve Smith, who had faced intense scrutiny and booing from the crowd.

Steve Smith had been embroiled in a ball-tampering controversy during Australia’s Test tour to South Africa in 2018, resulting in a one-year suspension. When he returned to international cricket and participated in the 2019 World Cup in England, fans in the stands repeatedly booed and labeled him a “cheater.”

In a memorable moment during the game against Australia, as Steve Smith fielded at third man, the crowd continued to boo him. However, Virat Kohli, who was batting at the time, noticed the crowd’s reaction and decided to intervene. Kohli gestured to the fans, urging them to support Smith instead of jeering him.

This gesture of sportsmanship from Virat Kohli received widespread praise and admiration. Even Steve Smith acknowledged the moment, expressing his gratitude for Kohli’s actions. Speaking to Star Sports, Smith said, “It was a very nice moment from Kohli in the 2019 World Cup, the crowd was booing me, and he told the crowd to just support him. What is wrong with him? That was great from Virat; I really appreciate it.”

Despite the friendly exchange between Kohli and Smith in that particular moment, the rivalry between India and Australia on the cricket field remains intense. In the 2019 World Cup match, Team India emerged victorious, defeating Australia by 36 runs. Kohli showcased his batting prowess with a brilliant innings of 82, while Smith contributed with a classy 69.

In the world of sports, cricket stands out not only for its thrilling contests but also for the moments that touch our hearts and remind us of the true spirit of the game. As we eagerly await the 2023 ICC World Cup, it’s worth taking a trip down memory lane to appreciate one such heartwarming incident that unfolded during the 2019 World Cup.

Cricket, often regarded as a fierce battle on the field, is equally about camaraderie, respect, and sportsmanship. These values are the pillars that uphold the sport’s legacy and make it more than just a game; it becomes a beautiful expression of human virtues.

The incident in question involves two cricketing giants: Virat Kohli, the former Indian captain, and Steve Smith, the Australian batting maestro. Smith had found himself embroiled in the ball-tampering controversy during Australia’s Test tour to South Africa in 2018. As a consequence, he faced a one-year suspension and the wrath of cricket fans around the world.

When the 2019 World Cup rolled around, Smith made his comeback to international cricket. However, he was met with a barrage of boos and chants of ‘cheater’ from spectators during the matches. It seemed that his past actions continued to haunt him, and the World Cup crowd in England was no exception.

In a particular game against India, while fielding at third man, Smith was once again subjected to the unpleasant chorus of boos. But amidst this backdrop of hostility, it was the Indian captain, Virat Kohli, who showcased the true essence of sportsmanship.

As Kohli batted, he noticed the crowd’s reaction towards Smith. Instead of ignoring it or allowing it to continue, he decided to make a powerful statement. With a gesture that spoke volumes, Kohli turned to the crowd and urged them to applaud Smith, shifting the narrative from negativity to positivity.

This simple yet profound act not only demonstrated Kohli’s leadership but also his empathy. He recognized that Smith had already paid the price for his mistakes and deserved a chance at redemption. Kohli’s gesture encapsulated the spirit of cricket, where respect for opponents, no matter the past, prevails.

Steve Smith, reflecting on the incident, expressed his appreciation for Kohli’s action. He acknowledged that Kohli’s call for support amidst the boos was a gracious move that showed the beauty of sportsmanship. In a game known for its fierce rivalries, this moment was a reminder that cricket is more than just competition—it’s a celebration of human values.

In that 2019 World Cup match, Team India emerged victorious by 36 runs. Kohli contributed with a brilliant 82, while Smith showcased his class with a well-played 69. While the match’s result was significant, it was the display of sportsmanship and camaraderie between Kohli and Smith that left a lasting impression.

As we look forward to the 2023 ICC World Cup, let’s cherish these moments that remind us why cricket is not just a game but a beautiful expression of values and principles that transcend boundaries and unite cricket fans worldwide. In the end, it’s these instances that make cricket a sport like no other.

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By- Sahiba Suri

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