VIRAT Kohli has become the Donald Trump of world sport.
The Indian captain is a law unto himself with no one - not even the ICC or his own board - holding him accountable for his continual perpetuation of fake news.
It's understood representatives from host broadcaster Star Sports came to Ranchi on Monday to apologise to Steve Smith for their part in spreading farcical claims that the Australian captain had mocked Kohli's shoulder injury during the third Test - the allegation being he had grabbed his own shoulder as a means of taunting his counterpart.
In fact television footage clearly showed it was a teammate's hand on Smith's shoulder as players embraced to celebrate the fall of Kohli's wicket.
Star Sports, which is heavily influenced by Kohli's bosses at the Board of Control for Cricket In India, had the decency to explain to Smith how an optical illusion caused by camera angles had deceived pundits like VVS Laxman into wrongly spreading a myth that went viral on social media.
Star Sports explained to the Australian camp what it did to rectify the false accusation, including an apology in its post-match show.
Kohli was also responsible for fanning the flames by attacking Smith on-field for daring to mock him and proceeding to celebrate David Warner's wicket late on day four by ferociously parading past the Australian dressing room clasping his shoulder.
Surprise, surprise though, the man who last week launched a scandalous attack on Smith and the Australians where he accused of them being systematic cheats refused to apologise or provide any concrete evidence in his post-match press conference. This despite the relative diplomacy shown by his superiors at the BCCI.
Just like President Trump, Kohli decided to blame the media as a means of trying to hide the egg smeared right across his face.
"It's funny all our guys (Indian media) ask about cricket as the first thing and you (Australian journalist) ask about something controversial," said Kohli.
"But it's okay.
"These things happen on the field. They (four or five of them) started taking Patrick's name (Indian physio Patrick Farhart). I don't know why. He's our physio. His job is to treat me. I don't find the reason behind it. I could not understand.
"You must ask him why they have started taking his name."
Bemused vice-captain David Warner had no idea what President Kohli was talking about.
"Nineteen years at New South Wales (Cricket), I doubt we'd disrespect Patty at all."
Smith was less than impressed at again being recklessly called out by Kohli.
"I am a bit disappointed. I didn't actually do anything," said Smith.
"Virat was having a go at me out in the middle and saying how I was disrespecting Patrick Farhart when actually it was the exact opposite.
"If I was to do anything, (I was inferring) he did a pretty terrific job to get Virat back on the field after that shoulder."
Kohli's performances are well down, with just 46 runs at an average of 9.2 this series - the lowest return of a specialist batsman from either side.
Even Mitchell Marsh (48) has made more runs, and another injured bloke Mitchell Starc (118) has more than double the Indian captain.
Special players are allowed to have bad series, but Kohli's great crime is he's proven that the spirit of cricket is officially dead.
Test captains, under the rules of the game, are supposed to be the flagbearers for upholding the spirit of the game, yet the ICC has allowed the Indian captain to destroy one of the foundations on which the game has been played for more than a century.
The fact Kohli has not been sanctioned for calling the Australians systematic cheats or his latest unfounded attack on Smith shows that he is completely untouchable.
The ICC won't fine him. Not even the BCCI, which through its broadcaster apologised to Smith, can get its skipper to tow the party line.
Even when the BCCI called a ceasefire with Cricket Australia last week, Kohli still refused to back down from his cheating accusations.
Like former Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga, Kohli relies on a flagrant disrespect of his opponents and the game to fuel himself and his team.
Soft cricketing administrators have given rise to a bat-wielding Trump.
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