India pacer Mohammad Shami charged by police after wife files formal complaint

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The controversy surrounding the pacer refuses to die down.

Police on Friday charged Indian fast bowler Mohammad Shami after his wife filed a formal complaint alleging assault, domestic violence and infidelity.

Shami’s wife Hasin Jahan, a former model, filed a written complaint with the police in Kolkata just days after going public with claims that Shami had affairs with other women.

The controversy has already cost Shami as India’s cricket board has put the 27-year-old bowler’s annual contract with the national team on hold while an investigation is conducted.

“Police have charged Indian pacer Mohammad Shami and his brother with sections related to rape, domestic violence and causing hurt with poisoning after Jahan’s complaint,” Kolkata police joint commissioner Praveen Tripathi told AFP.

“She has specifically complained about being tortured by her husband and in-laws, and about her husband having multiple extra-marital affairs,” Tripathi added.

Jahan made headlines by making public on Tuesday a series of messages Shami allegedly sent to women during their four-year marriage.

“I managed to access the security code in his phone and saw (the) chats last night. I was shocked and could not sleep,” she said.

The BCCI have withheld Shami's contract for the time-being.

The BCCI have withheld Shami’s contract for the time-being.

“He tortured me physically and mentally over and over again. Shami assaulted me after returning from the South Africa tour,” Jahan told journalists on Friday.

Shami has dismissed the accusations of infidelity as a campaign to defame him.

“What is being said about my personal life is completely false,” he wrote on Twitter Wednesday.

“It’s definitely a part of a big conspiracy against me. This is just an attempt to defame me.”

The Board of Control for cricket in India dropped Shami from a list of contracted players unveiled Wednesday, which saw skipper Virat Kohli and other top Test players awarded salaries just above $1 million.

A supervisory committee overseeing BCCI affairs said the allegations against Shami put them in a difficult position and that his contract was on hold pending review.

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Virat Kohli's and MS Dhoni's suggestions behind hefty hike in team India salaries

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Kohli had Dhoni had backed the substantial hike in salaries.

The idea to introduce a new grading system for team India’s central grade contracts with the BCCI seems to have emanated from skipper Virat Kohli and stalwart MS Dhoni.

On Wednesday, the Committee of Administrators (CoA), which was appointed by the Supreme Court to overlook the workings of the BCCI, announced a new central contract grading system for team India.

The revised system sees the introduction of a new top-grade called ‘A+’. 

The new grade is worth rupees 70 million ($1m) per annum and its first beneficiaries include Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah.

“This suggestion originated from Virat and MS (Dhoni) in the discussions. Their logic was this category would have only players featuring in all three formats, players who are in the top-10 rankings. They wanted a category of pure excellence where you perform and you are rewarded. And hence the players would not occupy a permanent slot in this category because if you don’t perform then you slip down the order,” CoA head Vinod Rai was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

The likes of Rohit Sharma find themselves in the new category.

The likes of Rohit Sharma find themselves in the new category.

The idea to hike players’ salaries considerably had originated during Anil Kumble’s tenure as the India head coach and he, along with Kohli, is said to have advocated a 150 per cent rise in the wages offered to players.

Test specialists such as Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin have been bracketed in the second highest category (A) which is worth rupees 50 million per annum.

The revised contract grading has divided opinion in the cricketing fraternity with many arguing that it rewards white-ball specialists over players who specialise in the five-day format.

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Virat Kohli unveiled as brand ambassador for Uber in India

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Kohli's list of endorsements continues to grow.

That India skipper Virat Kohli is one of the biggest marketing commodities in the cricket world is no hidden secret. The batting sensation enjoys a cult status among fans from the second-most populous country in the world, making him one of the most sought-after ambassadors and endorsers for leading brands.

Kohli has added another top brand in his ever-growing list of companies he currently endorses. The 29-year-old was unveiled as the first-ever brand ambassador for tech-based cab aggregators, Uber, for the Indian market.

According to Uber India, the move to appoint Kohli as brand ambassador for India is an initiative that is first of its kind by the global giants across the Asia Pacific region.

For his part, the cricketing superstar expressed his delight at joining hands with Uber.

“As a cricketer, I travel a lot and I have personally enjoyed the seamless experience of booking an Uber. It’s great to see how the company is using technology to revolutionise the way people move around cities, and is empowering millions by creating economic opportunities. I am very excited to join hands with a company that is so committed to people and cities they operate in,” he said.

“Uber India’s association with Virat Kohli will lay the foundation for a host of brand-led interventions in 2018. Besides being the face of the brand, Virat will be actively involved in a series of innovative marketing and customer experience initiatives to be rolled out by Uber India,” the company said in a statement.

Kohli currently endorses more than 20 brands including Puma and his brand-value was deemed to be worth more than that of football superstar and Barcelona magician Lionel Messi according to a report by Forbes in 2017. The India skipper was ranked seventh overall in the list of the top branded athletes worldwide by the magazine.

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