Kohli was met with a chorus of loud jeers when he came out to bat for India in the first innings on Thursday with the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) faithful giving the batsman a hostile reception.
This was not the first time the India superstar had been met with boos in the four-match series with similar receptions given to him at Perth and Adelaide.
On commentary duties for Channel 7, Ponting said, “If it was booing then it’s absolutely disgraceful.”
“I said that in the Perth Test as well. Show some respect,” the Australian icon added.
Ponting was not the only one to criticise the home support with Cricket Australia chief executive Kevin Roberts echoing the same sentiments during an interaction on SEN Radio.
“I don’t like seeing that. We talk about making Australians proud, we talk about the fact our goal is to win but our non-negotiable expectation is to compete with honour and I’d urge our fans to support the game with honour,” said Roberts.
“It’s bigger than all of us, respect our visitors, give them the best possible experience of our country, hopefully beat them on the field, but in all seriousness, we need to go about this with respect whether we are a player, administrator, fan, broadcaster. Respect is a really core foundation of the game and hopefully we can see that evident,” the Cricket Australia CEO continued.
Kohli has always divided opinion in Australia since his first tour of the country in 2011-12 where he was spotted showing the ‘middle finger’ to the crowd. However, the No1 ranked Test batsman has since toned down his theatrics although he remains an aggressive competitor on the field.
The boos directed towards Kohli at the SCG were even more baffling considering the fact that the India skipper had come out in support of the Glenn McGrath Foundation with pink gloves and a pink sticker on his bat.
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