India vs Australia: Virat Kohli's 'no-longer-friends' comment termed 'disappointing' by Darren Lehmann

PTI, Mar, 29 2017

New Delhi: Australia coach Darren Lehmann on Wednesday said he was disappointed with India captain Virat Kohli for declaring that he was no longer friends with the Australian players after an aggressively-contested Test series.

File photo of Australian coach Darren Lehmann. Getty Images

File photo of Australian coach Darren Lehmann. Getty Images

Australia lost 1-2 in the the four-match rubber, which was marred by constant showdowns between the players of both sides.

At the end of it, Kohli had no qualms saying that he had been proven wrong in considering Australian players his off-field friends.

Asked about Kohli's comment in a pre-departure media interaction, Lehmann said, "Disappointing but that's his opinion isn't it?"

On whether he thought that the rest of the Indian team had sentiments similar to Kohli, Lehmann replied in the negative.

"No, I don't think the Indian team (feels that), I too was very impressed with (Ajinkya) Rahane's captaincy. I thought he was brilliant," Lehmann said, trying to side-step the query by referring to Rahane's stand-in captaincy during the fourth and final Test in Dharamsala.

Kohli had missed the series-decider owing to a shoulder injury and even that had been mocked by the Australian players.

Lehmann was lavish in his praise for Australia captain Steve Smith, comparing his superb batting run in the series with no less than Don Bradman. Smith finished with 499 runs in four games.

"Smith has been brilliant, he has been unbelievable. He has been Bradman-like with the bat. I am really pleased with him and how he has brought the team as a leader," he said.

However, Lehmann was candid in admitting that the Australian team's performance did not quite match up to India. He was nonetheless proud of the effort put in by the visitors.

"We were disappointing in a couple of Test matches. We got so close but yet so far I suppose. We were a 100 runs short in this game. But I am proud of the lads and the effort they put in," he said.

"The way they have gone about it, it has been impressive. There are a lot of learnings for this group on this tour. They are hurting with the result at the moment but I am pleased with the effort and attitude. Smith will just get better and better.

"They have copped a lot from the Indian media. I am pleased with how they have handled it. We weren't good enough in this series but we have got to keep learning," he added.

Published Date: Mar 29, 2017 | Updated Date: Mar 29, 2017



Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3395 110
3 England 4097 105
4 Australia 3087 100
5 New Zealand 3114 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 5957 119
2 Australia 5505 117
3 India 4579 114
4 England 5645 113
5 New Zealand 5123 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 1625 125
2 England 1962 123
3 Pakistan 2417 121
4 West Indies 2222 117
5 India 2183 115