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BCCI backs captain Kohli and team on Steve Smith's 'Brain Fade' controversy

The Board of Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) on Wednesday has backed captain Virat Kohli on the Steve Smith controversy and has requested the International Cricket Council (ICC) to take cognisance of the Australia captain seeking an opinion from his dressing room on whether to review his leg-before dismissal during the second innings of the second Test in Bengaluru.

The Indian cricket team management has written to ICC match referee Chris Broad complaining about the incident, explained by Smith as a "brain fade".

The board said in a statement that Kohli was right in challenging Smith stating, "The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) after due deliberation and seeing the video replays of the episode steadfastly stands with the Indian Cricket Team and its Captain Mr. Virat Kohli."

Kohli, the BCCI statement said "is a mature and seasoned cricketer and his conduct on the field has been exemplary. Mr. Kohli's action was supported by ICC Elite Panel Umpire Mr. Nigel Llong who rushed in to dissuade Mr. Steve Smith from taking recourse to inappropriate assistance."

The BCCI said Steve Smith had made an admission in a presser after the match when he said, "I was looking at our boys. So shouldn't have done that. A bit of brain fade."

On the other hand, Cricket Australia has said the allegations against Smith are "outrageous".

"I find the allegations questioning the integrity of Steve Smith, the Australian team and the dressing room, outrageous," said Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland, adding, "Steve is an outstanding cricketer and person, and a role model to many aspiring cricketers and we have every faith that there was no ill-intent in his actions."

Virat Kohil, who had given Smith an angry send-off after the latter's dismissal on Tuesday, had said after the match on Tuesday, "I have seen it twice while batting. I have seen their players looking upstairs (dressing room). I told the umpires, this had to stop. I don't want to mention the word but it falls in that bracket. I would never do something like that on the cricket field."

"When he (Smith) turned back, the umpires knew exactly what was going on, because we observed that, told match referee also and the umpires that they have been doing that for the last three days and this has to stop," the India captain added.

Smith was adjudged lbw from a low delivery by Indian pacer Umesh Yadav.

Australia coach Darren Lehmann has also backed his skipper amid the controversy. "Never, ever, ever. Very surprised to hear that, but it's their opinion," Lehmann said when Australian reporters asked him about Kohli's allegations.

"He (Kohli) has his opinion and we have ours, but at the end of the day we play the game the right way. We've changed the way we want to play, we've obviously changed the side and we're a younger side so I'm pretty pleased with the way we do things now. "We've never done any of that, so we'll just get on with the next game," the Australia coach said.