Michael Gough, former Durham off-spinner, is one of the most experienced umpires going around in the current era. The Englishman has officiated in 62 One-day Internationals and was one of the umpires in the high-profile India-Australia ODI series in 2019 and earlier this year.
Recently, Gough revealed an incident from the 2020 ODI series in India where Sharma and Kohli were going hammer and tongs against the Aussies. Desperate to dislodge the pair, captain Aaron Finch proceeded to ask Gough- the off-spinner- for some advice.
“I remember a match between India and Australia, and Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma were putting on a huge partnership,” Michael Gough told Wisden Cricket Monthly.
“I was stood next to Aaron Finch at square-leg and he said to me, during the game, how it was unbelievable to watch these two great players. Then he asked me how I would bowl at them! I looked at him and said, ‘I’ve got enough on my plate, you’re on your own there’,” Michael Gough added.
The match that Michael Gough alluded to, is the third One-day International and the series-decider of this years’ bilateral series between Indian and Australia
Chasing 9-286 set by the Australians on the back of a Steve Smith hundred , Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli proceeded to shellack the visitors’ bowling attack to all corners of the Chinnaswamy stadium. Rohit Sharma scored a masterly 119 while Virat Kohli racked up a sumptuous 89 off 91 balls, sticking together a match-winning 137-run-stand for the 2nd wicket.
Shreyas Iyer’s brutal counter-attack [44 not-out of 35 balls] against Starc and co did the rest as the Men in Blue pulled off a seven-wicket win to avenge the 2-3 series defeat they’d suffered back in 2019 to clinch the three-match rubber by 2-1.
As for Virat and Rohit, it was just another day for the legendary duo as they racked up their 18th-century stand. Virat Kohli and Rohit have batted together on 80 occasions in ODI cricket and they are already the 2nd most successful pair in Indian cricket history and 7th in the all-time list.
In 80 innings that the duo have batted together, they have racked up 4878 runs at an average of 65.04 which included 18-century stands.
Michael Gough, on the other hand, featured in 67 First-Class games for Durham in which he claimed 30 wickets.