Cricket has over the years witnessed its fair share of intense rivalries and heated confrontations on the field. Intense contests often lead to exchanges on the field. However, they often end with players reconciling with each other, echoing sportsmanship. A similar incident took place recently between Virat Kohli and Naveen-ul-Haq.
Virat Kohli and Naveen-ul-Haq had an on-field altercation during the Indian Premier League 2023 season match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Lucknow Super Giants. The pacer was very vocal about the incident, lashing out at Kohli, through his quirky Instagram posts. The fans expected another intense contest between the two players during the recent India vs Afghanistan, ICC ODI World Cup 2023 game. However, the duo was seen sharing a laugh on the field. Kohli also asked the Delhi crowd to not mock the Afghanistan pacer.
In this article, we take a look at three such instances when cricketers fought on the field, but also reconciled later:
Harbhajan Singh and S Sreesanth
The Harbhajan Singh and S Sreesanth spat is often referred to as the “Slapgate” incident. It took place after the 2008 Indian Premier League season match between the Mumbai Indians and the Kings XI Punjab. Harbhajan Singh allegedly slapped Sreesanth on being instigated by the latter. While the slap wasn’t recorded on camera, visuals of Sreesanth crying went viral.
However, the duo moved on from the incident and has played together for India in several matches. They were also part of the 2011 World Cup-winning Indian team. Both Sreesanth and Harbhajan Singh have apologized publicly after the incident and expressed regret. Recently, they featured together in a TV advertisement for Zomato.
Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja
Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja are great friends and share the best of bonds on and off the field. They have played together for many years for the Team India and Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League. However, in 2012 the duo was involved in an on-field spat. It took place during the India and West Indies match in the tri-nation tournament.
Virat Kohli was leading the Indian team as MS Dhoni was out due to a hamstring injury. During the match, Suresh Raina dropped a catch off Ravindra Jadeja’s bowling. This did not go down well with the all-rounder, who exchanged a few heated words with Suresh Raina. Later during the drinks break, Suresh Raina was seen putting an arm over to pacify his teammate.
Virat Kohli and Steve Smith
Virat Kohli and Steve Smith were involved in a heated argument during the 2014 India tour of Australia. The Indian batter was leading the team, as MS Dhoni was not available. The incident took place when Steve Smith was facing Rohit Sharma in the match. Rohit appealed for an LBW dismissal. However, it was turned down by the umpire. Rohit’s appeal did not go down well with Steve Smith, who expressed his displeasure. Virat Kohli stepped in and argued with Smith, asking him to “stay in [his] limits.”
Since then, Virat Kohli and Steve Smith have had some on-field arguments including the DRS incident in 2017. Smith was adjudged plumb LBW off Umesh Yadav’s bowling during the Bengaluru test. The Aussie batter gestured at the dressing room to ask if he could take a review. Virat Kohli and the other Indian cricketers were livid with Smith’s gesture. Kohli also lashed out at it during the press conference later. However, over the years, the duo has always maintained that they share a great admiration for each other.