live Infotainment Factory: Kohli's booing reaction shows where AFL went wrong

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Monday, 10 June 2019

Kohli's booing reaction shows where AFL went wrong


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There are lessons to be learned from Virat Kohli in regards to the Adam Goodes booing saga, says AFL insider Damian Barrett.

Speaking on Footy Classified, Barrett said the AFL needed a reaction like Kohli's at the height of the relentless, racially-motivated booing of Sydney Swans legend, Goodes.

"Real actions and meaningful words from people of genuine authority can change behaviour instantly and India's cricket captain Virat Kohli did both of that," Barrett said.

"In the heat of battle at the World Cup and again after the game at the pres conference."

Kohli and Goodes

The Indian skipper made headlines over the weekend when he called out his nation's fans at the Cricket World Cup for booing Australian star Steve Smith during their 36-run victory over the men in green-and-gold. It was Smith's first major tournament since returning to the team having fulfilled a 12-month ban for his involvement in the dramatic ball-tampering controversy in March 2018.

Kohli rushed over to a section of the Indian fans at The Oval and gestured at them to stop booing and instead clap the former Aussie Test captain.

Despite the pair's fierce rivalry, Kohli reiterated his disappointment in the treatment of Smith.

"I just felt for him, and I told him, 'I'm sorry on behalf of the crowd'," Kohli told media after inflicting Australia's first loss of the tournament.

"Because I've seen that happen in a few earlier games, as well, and in my opinion that's not acceptable.

"It's not good to see someone down like that.

"We've had issues in the past. We've had a few arguments on the field. But you don't want to see a guy feeling that heat every time he goes out to play.

"If I was in a position where something had happened with me and I had apologised, I accepted it and I came back and still I would get booed, I wouldn't like it either."

Kohli's classy sportsmanship for Smith

It was a bold gesture of sportsmanship, but it also highlighted what was so obviously missing - in retrospect - during Goodes last two seasons in the AFL.

The two-time Brownlow Medallist and two-time AFL Premiership player was booed on every touch, not just when kicking for goal, or receiving a free, during his final years playing footy. The more he spoke out on racism in Australia, on discrimination, and on Indigenous issues, and after being awarded the 2014 Australian of the Year, the more media attention he received for his stance and the more booing he copped.

AFL ADMIT 'INACTION' IN GOODES APOLOGY

'WE'RE SO AFRAID': GOODES DOCO REVEALS UGLY TRUTHS

The AFL officially released a landmark apology to Goodes last week for their 'inaction' and 'failure to call out racism' during the booing abuse. They also vowed to ensure 'mistakes' of the past are never repeated', and that is where Barrett suggested the AFL look to Kohli for guidance.

"Clearly the booing of Steve Smith has vastly different origins to that directed at Adam Goodes in his final and disgracefully accepted season of AFL in 2015. He left the game a completely broken man. But as the AFL now continues to still grapple with how it failed to act properly and adequately and has since apologised and is now trying to work out a framework upon which to deal with future matters," Barrett explained.

"The actual way to do it, the world's greatest cricketer has shown how it should be done.

"Real actions at the right point in time, meaningful words to follow those actions, that is the way forward. All we need to do is look at Virat Kohli.

"We covered at the time that the industry itself didn't do enough. [They should] act upon it in the moment when the booing was at its loudest."

There are lessons to be learned from Virat Kohli in regards to the Adam Goodes booing saga, says AFL insider Damian Barrett.

Speaking on Footy Classified, Barrett said the AFL needed a reaction like Kohli's at the height of the relentless, racially-motivated booing of Sydney Swans legend, Goodes.

"Real actions and meaningful words from people of genuine authority can change behaviour instantly and India's cricket captain Virat Kohli did both of that," Barrett said.

"In the heat of battle at the World Cup and again after the game at the pres conference."

Kohli and Goodes

The Indian skipper made headlines over the weekend when he called out his nation's fans at the Cricket World Cup for booing Australian star Steve Smith during their 36-run victory over the men in green-and-gold. It was Smith's first major tournament since returning to the team having fulfilled a 12-month ban for his involvement in the dramatic ball-tampering controversy in March 2018.

Kohli rushed over to a section of the Indian fans at The Oval and gestured at them to stop booing and instead clap the former Aussie Test captain.

Despite the pair's fierce rivalry, Kohli reiterated his disappointment in the treatment of Smith.

"I just felt for him, and I told him, 'I'm sorry on behalf of the crowd'," Kohli told media after inflicting Australia's first loss of the tournament.

"Because I've seen that happen in a few earlier games, as well, and in my opinion that's not acceptable.

"It's not good to see someone down like that.

"We've had issues in the past. We've had a few arguments on the field. But you don't want to see a guy feeling that heat every time he goes out to play.

"If I was in a position where something had happened with me and I had apologised, I accepted it and I came back and still I would get booed, I wouldn't like it either."

Kohli's classy sportsmanship for Smith

It was a bold gesture of sportsmanship, but it also highlighted what was so obviously missing - in retrospect - during Goodes last two seasons in the AFL.

The two-time Brownlow Medallist and two-time AFL Premiership player was booed on every touch, not just when kicking for goal, or receiving a free, during his final years playing footy. The more he spoke out on racism in Australia, on discrimination, and on Indigenous issues, and after being awarded the 2014 Australian of the Year, the more media attention he received for his stance and the more booing he copped.

AFL ADMIT 'INACTION' IN GOODES APOLOGY

'WE'RE SO AFRAID': GOODES DOCO REVEALS UGLY TRUTHS

The AFL officially released a landmark apology to Goodes last week for their 'inaction' and 'failure to call out racism' during the booing abuse. They also vowed to ensure 'mistakes' of the past are never repeated', and that is where Barrett suggested the AFL look to Kohli for guidance.

"Clearly the booing of Steve Smith has vastly different origins to that directed at Adam Goodes in his final and disgracefully accepted season of AFL in 2015. He left the game a completely broken man. But as the AFL now continues to still grapple with how it failed to act properly and adequately and has since apologised and is now trying to work out a framework upon which to deal with future matters," Barrett explained.

"The actual way to do it, the world's greatest cricketer has shown how it should be done.

"Real actions at the right point in time, meaningful words to follow those actions, that is the way forward. All we need to do is look at Virat Kohli.

"We covered at the time that the industry itself didn't do enough. [They should] act upon it in the moment when the booing was at its loudest."

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