During the fourth day of the Cape Town Test, India captain Virat Kohli shot back at South Africa’s Rassie van der Dussen for sledging Rishabh Pant in the second Test.
Pant and van der Dussen were involved in an exchange when the left-hander came out to bat during India’s second innings in Johannesburg. “If you have half-knowledge, keep your mouth shut,” Pant was heard saying to Rassie, who was positioned at short leg. That chat perhaps would have been about Rassie’s dismissal when Pant had claimed a debatable catch.
Rassie also said something to Pant who replied, “You focus on your cricket, not mine,” and “Yeah, I can see you’re not a gentleman.”
Rassie’s sledging worked then as Pant played a horrific shot, dancing down the track to Kagiso Rabada, looking to slog him out of the park, but managed only an edge through to the wicket-keeper.
Virat Kohli, who missed the second Test, wasn’t pleased with the South African batsman trying to sledge Pant. On Friday, in Cape Town, he let his thoughts known to van der Dussen when the latter was batting during South Africa’s run chase.
During the 37th over, India appealed for a caught behind of van der Dussen off Mohammed Shami. Upon being turned down by the on-field umpire, Kohli went for the review.
It was a close call as Rassie’s bat had hit the ground at the same time the ball passed the bat. Without any conclusive evidence to overturn the on-field umpire’s decision, the third umpire stayed with the on-field decision which was not out.
Kohli wasn’t happy with this call, and went up for a chat with the umpires demanding an explanation. Then, some words were shared between Rassie and Kohli, and the India skipper was heard saying, “…You go after someone who is five years younger than you…”, referring to the sledging incident involving Rishabh Pant and van der Dussen in the second Test.
Kohli’s words didn’t shake van der Dussen’s concentration as he remained unbeaten on 41 when South Africa chased down 212 to win the Test match and the series.
The Test involved another, much-heated controversy with the DRS when the Indian players fumed at the broadcasters after Dean Elgar was given a reprieve by the HawkEye late on Day 3.
According to recent news in ESPNcricinfo, the ICC’s match officials have had a conversation with the Indian management “cautioning them about their conduct” on the field, however, “there was no official code of conduct breach charge levelled against India”.