Vaughan’s Match-Fixing Barb After Butt Slams Kohli-Williamson Comparison

Michael Vaughan on Sunday hit out at former Pakistan opener Salman Butt after he criticised him for drawing comparisons between Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson. Vaughan had said that if New Zealand captain Kane Williamson “was Indian, he’d be the greatest player in the world”. Butt, speaking on his YouTube channel, blasted Vaughan for stirring up controversy. Vaughan, known for speaking his mind, didn’t sit quietly and lashed out at the former Pakistan opener for his involvement in the match-fixing scandal in 2010 saying “wished he had such clear thought of mind when he was match fixing”.

“No idea what the headline is… but I seen what Salman has said about me … that’s fine and he is allowed his opinion but I wished he had such a clear thought of mind back in 2010 when he was Match fixing !!!” Vaughan wrote on Twitter.

Kohli, regarded as one of the best batsmen of the current generation, often draws comparisons with fellow cricketers who are in the same league as him or those who are rising through the ranks and have the potential to be the best.

Last week, Vaughan had said that if Williamson “was an Indian, he’d be the greatest player in the world”. Reacting to the matter, Butt described Vaughan’s comments as “irrelevant” and even questioned his credentials as an ODI batsman.

“Kohli is from a country that has a huge population. So, no doubt, he would have a bigger fanbase. Above all, his performances have been top notch. Currently, no other batsman in the world except Virat has 70 international centuries. He has dominated the batting rankings for a long period because his performances have been outstanding. So, I don’t understand what is the need of drawing comparison,” Butt said on his YouTube channel.

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“And who has compared the two? Michael Vaughan. He was a fantastic captain for England and was very gracious with the bat. But his output wasn’t on par with the beauty with which he used to bat. He was a good Test batsman but never scored a single century in ODIs. Now, as an opener, if you been the captain and have played 75-odd matches (86 ODIs) and haven’t scored a century, then there is no fun in discussing the records. It’s just that he has a knack of saying things that stir up controversies. Also, people have a lot of free time to stir up debate on any given topic,” he added.

“Williamson is great. He’s a top-class batsman, among top four-five batsmen in the world. Williamson may edge others when it comes to captaincy, but he (Vaughan) wasn’t talking about captaincy. In terms of players, there is a huge gap. Kohli’s stats and performances and the way he has won India matches, especially while chasing, it’s outstanding. Since the time both are playing, no one has been as consistent as Kohli. What Vaughan has said is irrelevant,” said Butt, who played 33 Tests, 78 ODIs and 24 T20Is for Pakistan.

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