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'Sir, Please Don't Ban Me' - When Kohli Unveiled Conversation With Match Referee

image-lsh6xxomVirat Kohli [X.com]

One of the early incidents reflecting Virat Kohli's unabashed attitude but also innate child-like humour came during his first trip to Australia with the Indian side in 2011-12. During the second Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Sydney, Kohli got frustrated with the jeering Aussie crowds and showed them the middle finger in an angry response. 

The modern-day legend felt he had enjoyed his one-up moment with abusive spectators. However, the promising Indian batter was in for a hard time with the match referee Ranjan Madugalle. In an amusing conversation, Kohli initially denied his mistake before Madugalle showed him the newspaper and his image. 

Virat Kohli instantly took a U-turn and apologised to the experienced official, pleading with the Sri Lankan not to ban him for the subsequent Test in Perth as he was already facing criticism for his low scores and was under threat of being dropped from the playing XI. 

When Virat Kohli Pleaded To Match Referee 

"The one thing I remember most is when I’d had enough of the Australian crowd at Sydney [in 2012] and I just decided to flick a [middle] finger at them. ‘I’m so cool’," Kohli told Wisden Cricket Monthly during an interview in 2018. 

"The match referee [Ranjan Madugalle] called me to his room the next day and I’m like, ‘What’s wrong?’. He said, ‘What happened at the boundary yesterday?’. I said, ‘Nothing, it was a bit of banter’."

"Then he threw the newspaper in front of me and there was this big image of me flicking on the front page and I said, ‘I’m so sorry, please don’t ban me!’. I got away with that one. He was a nice guy, he understood I was young and these things happen," he added. 

Madugalle's reprieve to Kohli allowed the youngster to play the third Test where in challenging conditions at the WACA, the right-hander averted his dip and produced two encouraging knocks of 44 and 75 in a heavy defeat for the Indians. In the following Test in Adelaide, Kohli came up with his maiden Test hundred and the rest, as they say, is history.