The shoulder controversy is not stopping anytime soon it seems. On Sunday, the Australian media slammed former Indian batsman VVS Laxman for making uncalled remarks on Australian captain Steve Smith for mocking Virat Kohli’s shoulder injury. Eventually, it turned out that Smith had not mocked Kohli.
A TV footage showed Steve Smith clutching his shoulder after taking a catch at second slip to dismiss the Indian captain. It was later revealed that it was not the hand of Smith but of Peter Handscomb. Earlier in the day Maxwell had mocked Kohli’s injury by clutching the right shoulder with his hand. The fact that he laughed while doing it made everyone believe that he indeed was mocking Kohli.
VVS Laxman took a bold stance in the commentary box, saying that the gestures by Maxwell and Smith are not healthy for the game. He probably did not know that Smith’s footage was a fake one. He said, “Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith, what example is he setting to his team? That’s very disappointing. You can sledge … it’s fine, but not mocking someone who is injured, in pain,” Laxman said during tea break on the third day during the live broadcast of the game.
“I’ve never experienced that because when you are injured, you always care for the opposition player as well.”
The comment did not go down well with the Australian media, who called Laxman’s comments as ‘Ill-informed attack on Smith’s leadership”. The Daily Telegraph, The Courier Mail and The Australian were too critical of Laxman. The Australian wrote, “The standard of play on the field has been brilliant in this series, but some of the nonsense surrounding it has left much to be desired.”
The other issue that these media houses raised was in relation with Laxman bringing the Late Phil Hughes death to prove his point. Laxman had said , “Especially after what happened to Phil Hughes, everyone is concerned when someone gets injured. Whether he gets hit on the helmet or is injured, there is a concern. You play the game a hard way but the spirit of the game should be there. This is defying the spirit of the game.”
Reacting to this, Australian sports website, RealSport101.com wrote, “VVS Laxman disgracefully references Phillip Hughes during attack on Australia.”
Australian media has been very, very critical of Indians in this series. There were occasions when there were biased reports, accusing Indian captain and coach of causing violence in the dressing room.