'Love it': Cricket great defends Virat Kohli's Barmy Army antics

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·Sports Reporter
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Virat Kohli angered some English cricket fans with his mockery of the Barmy Army during India's fourth Test victory, but was defended by cricket great Michael Vaughan. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
Virat Kohli angered some English cricket fans with his mockery of the Barmy Army during India's fourth Test victory, but was defended by cricket great Michael Vaughan. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

English cricket great Michael Vaughan has come out in defence of Indian captain Virat Kohli, after he was criticised for making fun of the 'Barmy Army' during India's fourth Test win over the home side.

Kohli was accused of being 'classless' after revving up the fanatical English fans by miming playing a trumpet after Jasprit Bumrah took the wicket of England's Ollie Pope.

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Despite the Barmy Army's constant antagonism of any and all visiting players, several prominent cricket voices felt Kohli had gone too far in giving it right back to the home fans.

English cricket journalist Lawrence Booth sarcastically tweeted: “Love this. His teammates are celebrating a wicket, but Kohli finds the time to taunt the England fans. Doesn’t miss a trick!"

“To clear up any confusion, I don’t really love this. I find it weird when a top-class sportsman isn’t content with winning a game, having totally outplayed the opposition, but wants to stick it to the fans too.”

Ex-England opener Nick Compton added: “It doesn’t look good for him! No need.”

Never one to shy away from a hearty cricket debate, Vaughan said Kohli was well within his rights to give the Barmy Army a taste of their own medicine. 

Vaughan said the game desperately needed characters like Kohli to ensure the sport had a personality, arguing it was no different to the antics of Shane Warne and his ilk back in the 1990s.

"Virat Kohli is an incredible leader,” Vaughan told Fox Sports.

 “He’s just got this buzz of energy. He was taking the p*ss out of the Barmy Army with these trumpet signs.

“I love it. We don’t have enough characters in the game and mimicking the crowd, trying to get his own supporters going.

“When they came out after lunch he was getting them going. It was like he was at the end of the long jump in the Olympics trying to get the crowd going.

“He’s an amazing character and yesterday he gave a tactical masterclass on how to win a Test match.

“We’re in the entertainment industry where we need people like Virat Kohli. We need characters.

“What he’s doing with this Indian Test match team is fantastic for the game because we need India to love Test match cricket, and with Virat at the helm leading this side, they’re certainly doing that and they’re playing to a great standard and they’re doing a job on my team.”

England collapse to Test defeat by India

India have clinched an ultimately comfortable victory over England in the fourth Test match at The Oval, taking a 2-1 series lead after their hosts collapsed from 2-141 to 6-147 midway through the fifth and final day.

That torpedoed England's hopes of achieving a famous victory and shortly after tea on Monday India wrapped up a 157-run success.

England had been set 368 to win, which would have been a national record for a fourth-innings chase eclipsing the 9-362 made against Australia at Headingley two years ago.

They had built a decent platform at 0-77 overnight and with Rory Burns making 50 went to lunch still in contention at 2-131.

India celebrate after winning the fourth Test against England at Manchester. (Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images)
India celebrate after winning the fourth Test against England at Manchester. (Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images)

But ten runs later Haseeb Hameed, who had dug in to score 63, was bowled by a ball pitched into the rough by Ravi Jadeja.

A clatter of wickets followed as England collapsed. Ollie Pope was bowled off his pads by Jasprit Bumrah for two, the seamer, bowling superbly with the old ball, following up by dismissing Jonny Bairstow, yorked for nought. Moeen Ali then fell to Jadeja for another duck, the 43rd suffered by England this calendar year.

That left England fighting only to save the game. Their last hope of that went when captain Joe Root chopped on for 36 at 7-182.

It did not take India long to wrap up the innings, Umesh Yadav working through the tail to pick up 3-60 while Bumrah took 2-27 off 22 overs.

Jadeja and Shardul Thakur also claimed a pair of wickets apiece as England were dismissed for 210.

With AAP

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