Kohli’s decision was met with polarised responses from the cricket community and by Indian cricket fans on social media when it was first made public before the start of the series.
India’s dismal performance in the first Test in Adelaide, where they lost by eight wickets after being shot out for their lowest ever Test innings total of 36, added further fuel to the negative opinions.
“I disagree with that (trolling Kohli). Why would you do that? He has made a personal decision to be with his wife to have the first child, which is not too unfair to ask for,” Engineer said.
Engineer, who played 46 Test matches between 1961 and 1975, said that the responses Indian players get for failures and success can be compared to what South American football players face.
“It’s just like South America. They are very passionate about their football. If we lose abroad or anywhere, our house is on fire the next day. But the very next day, as soon as you do well, you’ll be top of the tree. You’re God. This is how passionate we are. You can’t help it,” he said.
Friends who test negative together spend positive time together! ☺️ Nothing like a get together at home with friend… https://t.co/eTsnPUtG74
— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) 1609496172000
While he said that he would have continued playing, especially after a result like the Adelaide Test, he finds no problems in Kohli’s decision.
“I would have rather played for India, especially with India not having done so well in the first match. My thoughts would have been for my country. But I don’t blame Virat Kohli for being with his family. This is the modern trend. I think it’s just an age difference,” Engineer said.