One mistake from any player could spoil the entire Indian Premier League, Virat Kohli warned his Royal Challengers Bangalore team in a virtual welcome team meeting.
In a video posted by the franchise's twitter handle, Kohli is seen stressing to his teammates on the need to respect and secure the bio-security bubble created to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
"Unbelievable, first experience like this," he said about the 'online' team meeting.
"It's obviously very awkward to have a welcome meeting like this but something we probably have to get used to quite a bit
"We've done quite well to get to Dubai safe and sound firstly. We've followed what's been told to us and I would expect everyone to be on the same page in terms of securing the bubble at all times and making sure that nothing is compromised, because one mistake from any of us could literally spoil the whole tournament and none of us want to do that.
"I can't wait to get to our first practice session. Something that we all are going to cherish, an opportunity to create a good team culture from Day 1. For me it's all about what can I do to create an environment where everyone feels part of the team equally and everyone feels responsible for where we want to go equally. Everyone has to contribute towards that, firstly the seniors in the team. Let's start things on the right note."
Kohli went on to ask about the consequences in case a player breaches the bubble.
"My question is if someone violates any rules or any guidelines that have been set by us as a franchise, what happens? What are the repercussions? We all need to understand that to be able to protect what we've created and to make sure we continue to protect this bubble," he said.
Sneak peek into RCB’s first virtual team meeting of #IPL2020 after landing in the UAE, with @CoachHesson, @imVkohli and Simon Katich welcoming the team and addressing them on an exciting season that’s right around the corner! #PlayBold #BoldDiaries pic.twitter.com/VA4jY7HylN — Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) August 24, 2020
Mike Hesson, the RCB coach, replied:
"Good question, we hve a document that the BCCI has written, it's part of your contract. So a breach of the bubble in a willful act, it becomes a contractual issue between the player and RCB and will be dealt with very seriously. If it's accidental breach of the bubble, players will have to go into isolation for 7 days and repeat the tests before being allowed again.
"If someone breaks this bubble, it will affect the whole tournament. It's not just RCB, it's actually the tournament and the TV rights, so there will be strong consequences if a player chooses to do that. Every team and every player will need to sign a document which explains the consequences."
Kohli went on to say "All I'm saying is, if someone was to end up in such a situation or a position, for me it's letting the whole team down. It might happen at a stage of the tournament where we can't afford to lose that player. And if we get harmed by it, the whole team and system loses. So I just wanted to talk about it so that everyone understands the repercussions if someone violates the rule."