29 Dec 2014

Kohli takes aim at Australians

7:55 am on 29 December 2014

The India batsman Virat Kohli says Australia's cricket players called him a "spoilt brat" and that he has "no reason to respect" paceman Mitchell Johnson.

Australia all-rounder and paceman Mitchell Johnson celebrates a wicket.

Australia all-rounder and paceman Mitchell Johnson celebrates a wicket. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Kohli scored 169 on the third day of the third Test in Melbourne during which he and Johnson exchanged plenty of verbals.

Kohli says their words spurred him on to a career-high 169 at the MCG.

Animosity has been a constant factor in Australia's four-Test series against India.

But relations reached boiling point at the Melbourne Cricket Ground yesterday as Kohli helped his side to 462-8 at stumps in reply to Australia's first innings of 530.

Kohli and fellow century maker Ajinkya Rahane put on a record breaking 262 run fourth wicket stand as Kohli regularly clashed with Mitchell Johnson, who dismissed him with the final ball of the third day.

Kohli says the Australians were calling him a spoilt brat - "I said 'maybe that's the way I am - I know you guys hate me and I like that'.

"I don't mind having a chat on the field and it worked in my favour."

"I like playing against Australia because it's very hard for them to stay calm."

"It really excites me and brings the best out in me. They don't seem to be learning the lesson."

Kohli, fined for an altercation which came between his two centuries at Adelaide Oval during the first Test, didn't stop there.

"I respect a few of them but if someone doesn't respect me I've got no reason to respect them," Kohli replied, when asked if he respects Johnson.

Ryan Harris was stunned when told of Kohli's words, but eventually returned fire.

"We try not to say too much to him, but sometimes he brings it on himself I guess when he starts it," Harris said.

"It's never personal, it's always a bit of fun."

"It's interesting to hear him say that. It's probably a good thing. If he's worrying about stuff like that, hopefully his batting goes down hill."

Harris suggested the entire Australian team respected Kohli and hinted that the Indian batsman should leave any bad blood on the field.

"If that (banter) doesn't stay out there ... he needs to have a look at that."

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