India and Australia share an intense rivalry when it comes to cricket. You could easily compare it with the tension that grips you whenever there’s an India-Pakistan match. The aggression, the sledging, and the rivalry are not for the faint-hearted. Now imagine a new player in that situation. Back in 2013-14, KL Rahul was on his maiden trip to Australia, and the first overseas tour is undoubtedly a memorable affair. But for Rahul, the trip included something he’d love to forget.
Foreign trips come with a lot of challenges because they really help build one’s career. But it was the former which greeted Rahul in his first Test match at the Melbourne Cricket Grounds in 2014-15. A recent video shared by the BCCI gave an insight into the tough conditions one has to face in Australia.
"The crowd is really against us, they love their cricket, but they will make our lives hard on the ground. That is why cricket in Australia is exciting," Rahul said. He revealed that he was standing in deep square leg and someone from the crowd asked him his name.
“I told them my name. 10-15 seconds later the whole section goes 'Rahul is a wanker'. It was amazing, amazing experience,” said Rahul. The Aussie crowds are notorious for taunting visiting players.
Though it shows the amount of passion Australians have for cricket, sledging does tarnish the gentleman’s game. Indeed, the last time the Aussies sledged Virat Kohli (in 2012), it became international news as the batsman, who was fielding in the deep, whipped out his middle finger to acknowledge the crowd. It was later known as Fingergate.
Back in Australia for another tour, India now have a point to prove. The then abused Virat Kohli is now leading India. He was trolled in 2012 for not playing well, but in 2018 Kohli is in sublime form. KL Rahul is on the team as well, though his fortune with the bat hasn’t been too good. Australia won the first match, but we leveled things in the third. A Test series is about to begin soon. Let’s hope this time the rivalry is expressed with a show of bat and ball.