Bishan Singh Bedi has found the most inopportune time to mount a scathing criticism on Virat Kohli and Co. With a day to go before India square up against Australia in a T20I series Down Under, with the stakes running sky-high, the former ace India tweaker has brought up Virat Kohli-Anil Kumble saga that had rocked Indian cricket in the middle of last year.      

“One person is doing all he wants and we are letting it happen. What would Anil (Kumble) have said, he was gracious to leave it like that," Bedi was quoted as saying by India Today on Monday. He added that Kohli likes to be surrounded by yes men like Ravi Shastri, whose selection as the coach of the Indian team was largely Kohli's choice, and that shows the Indian captain wants complete control over the team and hates contrarian views.

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“The Indian team is good, we all know that, but the same team went to England and South Africa and those teams were also 'weak'. Yes the bans have happened on two kids (Steve Smith and David Warner) but a team is not made of two individuals. In fact, our team is made of one person, everything is about Kohli. The amount of focus there is, you don't realise how much pressure you are putting on that kid (Kohli), both as a batsman and a captain," he noted. 

Bedi added, "In my humble opinion, there is hardly anyone more intense than Kohli, but there is a world of difference in his intensity and the team's. Similarly, Virat Kohli as a player and Virat Kohli as a captain, there is a world of difference."

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Let's be clear on one point. There was a total breakdown of communication between Kohli and Kumble and the players were far from happy with the coach's 'headmasterly' behaviour. There was absolutely no way the cricket advisory committee, committee of administrators or the BCCI could have salvaged the situation until Kumble stepped down as coach following a Champions Trophy final defeat to Pakistan, mentioning in his resignation letter that the “captain had reservations" with his style of coaching.

For the sake of argument, even if we accept that Bedi is right in his assessment of the captain, his timing could not have been worse. In the current situation, when India are set to play a marquee series and with the World Cup round the corner, the world’s best batsman must be given all the support and encouragement, especially by former Indian cricketers such as Bedi himself. Negative talk, however, can cause unnecessary distractions for Kohli and should be discouraged.