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Indian Premier League 2023

‘Kohli’s popularity worries Gambhir’ – Days after Kohli incident, Gambhir tears into former Delhi cricket chief for on-air tirade

Gambhir tweets on Kohli incident | IPL 2023
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Lucknow Super Giants mentor Gautam Gambhir has responded to scathing criticism from former Delhi Cricket chief and TV anchor, Rajat Sharma, who commented on the recent Virat Kohli-Gambhir IPL spat.

Two days ago, Gambhir was at the centre of an ugly clash with Kohli after Super Giants’ IPL 2023 game against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Both Gambhir and Kohli were fined 100 per cent of their match fees, with the incident becoming a hot topic of discussion on social media.

There were plenty of reactions: one of which came from Rajat, a popular TV news anchor who was also the president of the Delhi & District Cricket Association from 2018 to 2019. Rajat resigned from the post, citing vested interests among other DDCA members before he was reinstated by a DDCA ombudsman. But the Association’s directors immediately opposed the move. In 2020, Rohan Jaitley was elected unopposed to the position.


Rajat, who has earned his name as a news anchor, criticised Gambhir, who is an elected member of the Indian parliament, for his behaviour after the game. He said Gambhir’s ego had increased since he was elected, and that he was “worried by Kohli’s popularity”.

“Gambhir has been provoked. After fighting the elections and becoming a Member of the Parliament, Gambhir’s ego has increased even more,” Rajat said live on India TV. “How Virat Kohli’s popularity worries Gambhir was witnessed yet again, clearly on the ground. Kohli is a player who is always aggressive, doesn’t tolerate any nonsense and so he gave Gambhir an apt reply.”

“In all, what Gambhir did is against the sportsman spirit. This behaviour is not befitting of a former India player and a current Member of Parliament. Such incidents ruin the reputation of cricket and should not have happened.”

On Wednesday, Gambhir retaliated. Tweeting without directly naming Rajat, he wrote: “Man who ran away from Delhi Cricket citing “pressure” seems over eager to sell paid PR as concern for cricket! Yahi kalyug hai jahan ‘bhagode’ apni adalat chalate hain (This is the modern era, those who run away are the ones running their own courts of law”.

The adalat (court) reference is a clear dig at Rajat Sharma’s TV show ‘Aap ki Adalat‘ (The court of the public).

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