Australian pacer Mitchell Starc says that he knows Team India captain Virat Kohli a bit better than his Australian teammates and said that he was a 'different' guy off-field. The rivalry between India and Australia are well known to all, especially on the field as the animosity is quite intense.
In the last edition of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2017, India won the three-match Test series 2-1 at home, however, a feud was born between Kohli and the rest of the team. Following the series win, Kohli stated that he would never consider Australian players as his 'friends'.
However, the red-ball specialist feels that Kohli is a 'nice' guy off-field. On being asked whether he feels the same way the Indian skipper does, Starc said that he doesn't.
"I don't get that feeling at all. We had some good battles on the field through that series, all in good fun and had a few laughs about it and caught up after one of the Test matches," Starc said as quoted by cricket.com.au.
"I'm sure I'll have a few chats with him over this series and share a laugh and chat about the series once it's done," he added.
The Aussie pacer was a part of Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League and shared the dressing room with Kohli.
"I got to know him a fair bit off the field and I think probably know him a bit better than some of my Australian teammates. (They) obviously only see them on the cricket field and the general public see what a competitor he is and how much he loves the challenge of performing home and away and to be one of the best players in the world.
"I've got to see a bit off the field, where he's very different. (He's) such a nice guy off the field, he's got a lot of time for everyone and just loves to be part of the boys, whether its playing FIFA or being around the team room," Starc said.
The atmosphere in the Australian camp is now highly different from what it was and when it comes to mind games and sledging on field, the two nations have made it clear that they would refrain from it.
India have never won a Test series on Australian soil and with the hosts in complete turmoil, the Virat Kohli led Team India have a great opportunity at hand.
India begin their tour with a three-match T20I series followed by a four-match Test series. The 1st T20I is being held at The Gabba, Brisbane on November 21.