Why David Warner asked Rohit Sharma to ‘speak English’!
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Why David Warner asked Rohit Sharma to ‘speak English’!

Australia’s David Warner said no one would have said anything had Indian cricketer Rohit Sharma been shown on the big screen saying something in a language other than English.

cricket Updated: Oct 18, 2017 18:16 IST
Devarchit Varma
Devarchit Varma
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
David Warner,Rohit Sharma,INdia vs Australia
David Warner argues with Rohit Sharma as Suresh Raina tries to intervene during their ODI tri-series match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in 2014-15.(Reuters)

David Warner has revealed why he demanded Rohit Sharma to ‘speak English’; an infamous on-field remark made by the Australian cricketer during India’s tour Down Under in 2014-15.

Warner was labelled ‘thuggish’ and ‘juvenile’ by former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe and Cricket Australia (CA) CEO James Sutherland served a warning to the explosive opener after his run-in with Rohit during a match in Melbourne.

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Warner has clarified that he wanted Rohit to ‘speak English’ because he presumably would have been penalised had the world seen him saying the same word in English on the big screen.

Years down the line, Warner has mellowed down from being called ‘The Bull’ -- only for his explosive batting and ‘The Reverend’ for the changes that he has brought about in his personality, earning himself the Australian vice-captaincy.

“After the Rohit Sharma incident (I stopped). I felt I had a valid point there, because if I’m going to swear in a different language on the big screen, nobody is going to do something about it. But if I said what he was saying to me, in English, and you could lip read me — I’ll still get in trouble anyway,” Warner was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.

“That’s where I was really disappointed with what happened. Everybody interpreted it the way I actually said. It wasn’t being racist or anything like that. I just clearly wanted him to swear at me in English so everyone else could hear what he was saying.”

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The Australian vice-captain, who has been in news of late for his explosive comments on England and the impending Ashes 2017-18, says he could be going back into his previous aggressive mode.

“I’ll be doing everything I can to make sure that when we’re out there, we’ve got a lot of energy and buzz. Whether that’s being vocal or with my intent batting and in the field. When it comes to the Ashes, it’s a massive thing for us,” he said.

“Given what happened in India, given the IPL and county cricket. Everyone’s mates, we are mates, but sometimes you have to really try and work a way out to actually build some kind of — I used the word ‘hatred’ the other day. But some dislike, make things a little bit uncomfortable for blokes when they’re out there,” said Warner, in a way clarifying his recent comments that sparked a controversy.

“A big one is stump mic. You can hear the guys from fine leg saying stuff, so it’s very hard to actually say things these days. Because it gets picked up everywhere, you look at the stuff that happened with Michael Clarke. People turn around and go ‘Woah, I wouldn’t have expected that to happen on a cricket field,’ but that’s the aggression that happens. That shouldn’t have been put out there. But when you’re on the field, these little things can happen and it gets you going,” Warner explained.

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Don’t mess with Virat Kohli

The Australians seem to have conceded that sledging the Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli is not worth taking a risk.

“We talk about guys like Virat Kohli, not to have a go at him or say anything to him because it inspires him. That is what some players do, they do take a little bit of inspiration out of that and determination to go one better,” said Warner.

First Published: Oct 18, 2017 18:02 IST