Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli squared off in an ugly spat during Royal Challengers Bangalore's chase against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Chinnaswamy Stadium. After Kohli was caught in the deep and was heading back to the pavilion, Gambhir ran past him on his way to celebrating with his team-mates. Some words may have been exchanged then and before we knew it, the two were charging at each other. Before it could get worse, their Delhi team-mate Rajat Bhatia intervened and seperated the pair.
Both Kohli and Gambhir received an official warning and reprimand for breaching the tournament's code of conduct. "Both Mr. Kohli and Mr. Gambhir admitted to the Level 1 offence (Article 2.1.4) of using language or a gesture that is obscene, offensive or insulting during the match," an IPL release stated
Gambhir's 'Kallis' moment
By nature, Gautam Gambhir is an intense human being. On Wednesday, he experienced a minute of heightened anxiety when he saw the name of South African allrounder Jacques Kallis on his suitcase as he retrieved his baggage at the Bangalore airport. In his column in the Hindustan Times, Gambhir expanded on his thoughts of what he felt being in the shoes of Kallis, who was named one of Wisden's Five Cricketers of the Year on Wednesday. He wrote: "I too had that rare moment of being in his shoes or should I say the pleasure of 'Being Kallis'. The other day when I was travelling, the airline baggage tag on my suitcase and the kitbags read KALLIS/JACQ. And not my name. I wonder if someone in the airline staff was trying to flatter me (hopefully) or were they raising the bar for me (impossible to achieve?) or it was simply one of those group check-in scenarios where all bags are tagged in one name (NO!!!). Whatever it was, I felt like a 60-second-legend!"
Preparing for Hurricane Gayle
Meanwhile Gambhir's hero Kallis, writing his own column in the Times of India says teams can get carried away by "over-planning". Ahead of the match against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Thursday, Kallis said it would be futile to lose sleep over how to get Chris Gayle out. "You can make all the plans in the world for batsmen like Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers - but you can also overplan," Kallis said. "It's like preparing for a hurricane - you just have to accept that some days it will rip the roof off your house no matter what you do. And other days, it will pass by harmlessly!"
How to become a champion T20 team
There are two major elements that make a team successful in the IPL: the ability of the player to play with freedom and a united team. That is what made Kolkata Knight Riders the champions last year, according their coach Trevor Bayliss. Speaking to The Telegraph Bayliss said: "There's no set formula in T20. Having the freedom to express themselves is important for the players and helps in being successful. They also need to know their role in the team and must not feel insecure."
Camaraderie is the other important factor, something Bayliss said he has noticed in two other franchises - Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad. "A good feeling among the group is important," said Bayliss. "You need honesty within the group, the coach has to be honest with his players and vice-versa. You need an environment where everyone can speak his mind. As I've said, you don't have to be the best team to win."
The Murali admiration club
Royal Challengers Bangalore bowler Murali Kartik expressed his admiration for former Sri Lankan offspinner Muttiah Muralitharan, saying that the latter had the enthusiasm of an 18-year-old when it came to bowling at the opposition batsmen.
"It's amazing," Kartik said to the Times of India. "He seems to know about most players in the world. He watches every bit of cricket shown around the world I think. He might ask you about some domestic player's strengths and weakness, make up his strategy and off he goes."
While Kartik and Muralitharan helm the spin unit of the Royal Challengers, their fast-bowling hasn't suffered in spite of Zaheer Khan's absence. Jaydev Unadkat, who has opened the bowling for Royal Challengers in recent matches, told the Hindu there was healthy competition among bowlers for spots in the team and Zaheer was also involved in helping bowlers prepare for the games