Cricketer David Warner has defended his “speak English” comment made to batter Rohit Sharma during Australia’s ODI defeat of India at the MCG on Sunday.
The row erupted during the match after India’s batters took a run on an overthrow that Warner thought had hit one of them. It is cricket etiquette that if a throw from a fielder hits the batter or the bat, then no extra run is taken.
“When I went over to say something to him, he sort of said something in their language and I said ‘speak English’ because, if you’re going to say something, understand that theoretically I cannot speak Hindi,” Warner told Sky Sports Radio on Monday.
“I did the polite thing and asked him to speak English, therefore he did and I can’t repeat what he said,” claimed the Australian opener.
As it turns out though, replays showed that there was in fact no contact between the ball and the batter when Warner threw the ball.
Warner admitted he was mistaken about the play and therefore about confronting Sharma, who went on to score 138, but remained unapologetic about the contentious remark and accepted his ICC imposed fine of 50 percent of his match fee.
“I was in the wrong … I shouldn’t have engaged him,” Warner said.
“If people get on the wrong side of me, I’m not going to back down.
“We’re always there to play hard aggressive cricket, but you know what comes with that – sometimes you are going to get fined.
“We’ve just got to keep trying not to cross that line, because we’re all about playing cricket the right way.”
IMAGE: David Warner during the One Day International cricket match between Australia and India at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on January 18, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia. Warner was involved in an on-field spat with Rohit Sharma, demanding that the India centurion “speak English”. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)