Former England captain Nasser Hussain branded KS Bharat as a “brave man” after the Indian wicketkeeper was seen maturely handling the temperament of Virat Kohli on the opening day of the World Test Championship (WTC) final. The event transpired during one of Mohammad Shami’s overs when Australian batter Steve Smith attempted a pull shot but was beaten by the pace and the length.
The ball went straight into the clasp of Bharat. When it was going past Smith’s bat, there seemed to be a slight sound. Kohli immediately made a loud appeal for a caught-behind, but only to be denied by the on-field umpire.
Kohli looked sure that the ball touched off Smith’s gloves when Bharat approached his senior, convincing him not to go for the DRS. The act caught the attention of Nasser Hussain, who was the commentator at the time.
“Bharat was very tough with Kohli. It’s not easy to overrule Kohli. Kohli wanted to go for a review but Bharat, playing his 5th Test, showed the guts to stop him, saying, ‘No, you are wrong.’ Brave man,” the former English skipper was heard saying.
Former India head coach Ravi Shastri was also present in the commentary panel and put his thoughts on the matter. When being asked by fellow commentator Justin Langer if there is any player in the squad who could oppose the decisions of Virat Kohli, Shastri said, “If it was anybody else, he would have been half as expressive. In fact, Cheteshwar Pujara of all people had to say, ‘Calm Down, Virat, calm down’.”
Apart from his on-field composure, KS Bharat also stole the show with his exceptional glovework during Australia’s batting on the first day, justifying his selection over Ishan Kishan in the major contest. He took two brilliant catches to send off the Aussie openers, Usman Khawaja and David Warner.
Following the early dismissals of both openers and Marnus Labuschagne, Australia were struggling to find the momentum when Travis Head and Steve Smith could change the course of the game, stitching a crucial 251-run partnership.
Head showed more urgency in accelerating the innings and scored 146 runs off 156 deliveries. Smith, on the other hand, played a gutsy 95-run knock in 227 balls. At the end of Day 1, Australia were at 327 runs while losing just three wickets.