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Sunday, Aug 18, 2019

R Ashwin wants March 30 to be remembered as world apology day. This is why

R Ashwin comments came after Brad Hodge, who is Gujarat Lions’ coach in the Indian Premier League (IPL), apologised to Virat Kohli for comments suggesting the India captain missed the fourth Test in Dharamsala to rest his injured shoulder ahead of the IPL campaign

ipl-2017 Updated: Mar 30, 2017 13:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
R Ashwin took a jibe at Gujarat Lions coach Brad Hodge, who had criticised Virat Kohli for missing the Dharamsala Test in the Border Gavaskar Trophy.
R Ashwin took a jibe at Gujarat Lions coach Brad Hodge, who had criticised Virat Kohli for missing the Dharamsala Test in the Border Gavaskar Trophy.(PTI)

Ravichandran Ashwin not just lets his ball do the talking, but can also fire verbal volleys if the need arises. Sometimes they are cheeky as well.

After the former Australian cricketer Brad Hodge, who is also the head coach of Gujarat Lions, issued an apology for his remarks against India skipper Virat Kohli for missing the final Test to be fit for the IPL, Ashwin took to Twitter to poke some more fun at Hodge.

“On a lighter note, from this year onwards 30th march will be remembered as world apology day,” Ashwin tweeted.

Read | Brad Hodge apologises to Virat Kohli over shoulder injury jibe

Hodge issued an apology for his comments directed to Kohli. “As a professional sportsperson who has represented his country, I certainly understand what it means to step out on a cricket field donning your nation’s colours. It is the highest honour a sportsperson can ask for,” Hodge said in his apology letter posted on the social media.

Read | Virat Kohli skipped Dharamsala to play IPL - Here’s Brad Hodge’s damning charge

“Keeping that in mind, I take this opportunity to apologise to the people of India, cricket fans, the Indian national cricket team and particularly Virat Kohli for my previous comments. My intension was never to harm, criticize or be derogatory towards anyone. They were intended to be light-hearted comments with the utmost respect to the Indian Premier League which I have thoroughly enjoyed through the years”

“The public & fans have every right to be upset, and the backlash I have received has certainly driven the point home,” he added.

Read: Why Virat Kohli is defensive on ‘not friends with Australians’ comment

Though India won the Test series 2-1 against Australia, the acrimonious atmosphere did not die down after the fourth and final Test at Dharamsala on Tuesday.

Australian skipper Steven Smith too had apologised for letting his emotions get better of him during the series. “I have sort of been very intense in my own little bubble and at times I have let my emotions and actions just falter a little bit throughout this series and I apologise for that,” Smith had said after losing the Dharamsala Test and with it the series.

This is not the first time Ashwin has jumped into Kohli’s defence whenever his captain has been under attack.

During the Test series against England, Ashwin was involved in an altercation with England pacer James Anderson during the Mumbai Test.

Ashwin was irked by Anderson’s remark on Kohli after the Indian skipper slammed 235 at the Wankhede Stadium. “I am not sure if Virat Kohli has changed. I just think any technical deficiencies he has got are not in play out here. The wickets just take that out of the equation. There is not that pace in the wicket to get the nicks, like we did against him in England — with a bit more movement,” Anderson had said in his post-match press conference.

“When that (pace and movement) is not there, Kohli is very much suited to playing in these conditions. He is a very good player of spin — and if you are not bang on the money and don’t take your chances, he will punish you,” he added.

Kohli, who turned peacemaker in Ashwin-Anderson spat, said: “Ashwin wasn’t pleased with what he (Anderson) said in the press and he let him know without using any bad words, honestly.”

First Published: Mar 30, 2017 12:28 IST

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