Gambhir means serious and Gautam Gambhir is certainly one of the more serious persons in Indian cricket. His sobriety and grave disposition is there for all to see. This has probably also contributed to his apparent fall-out with the likes of Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
One of the rather infamous incidents from Gambhir's career was his on-field confrontation with Virat Kohli during an Indian Premier League match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2013. The two men seemed headed for blows and were prevented from proceeding further by Rajat Bhatia of KKR.
In an interview given to a news website, Gambhir was asked about that incident and what actually happened. The former India opener, indirectly, said that Virat had been abusing his teammates a lot when they were batting.
"Sometimes, when you are leading, it is very important to stand up for your teammates. I have no regrets (about what happened). I have always said this and I am repeating this today, the incident that happened there, if the same thing were to happen again today, I will take the same stand, I will do the same thing, I will stand by my teammates and I have no regrets for it," Gambhir bluntly stated on The Lallantop.
When pressed further to reveal what actually caused the ugly-looking altercation, Gambhir claimed that it was the result of accumulated anger on his and his teammates' part over the constant abuse they were receiving from Kohli.
"When we were batting, there was a lot of verbal abuse from their side as well, towards all my teammates. If you abuse somebody's teammates, if you have the guts to give it, you should also have the guts of getting it back. If I am sledging someone, then I should have the guts to get sledged also. It can't be one way."
The cricketer-turned-politician also explained what he thinks are the boundaries regarding sledging in cricket.
"Unless and until it doesn't get personal, I am absolutely fine with it. That's why I am saying this over and over again, if the same thing were to happen today, if I was playing and had to take a stand, I will take the same stand."
Kohli's penchant for verbal aggressiveness is well-known. This is a trait that has been seen right from the beginning of Virat's rise to stardom. When the Indian under-19 team won the ICC Under-19 World Cup in 2008, Virat, captain of that team, reacted by uttering expletives to his heart's content. Even as a captain, he has been seen giving send-offs to batsmen who have been dismissed.
Gambhir doesn't share this characteristic entirely but it must be remembered that he too has a history of on-field confrontations, possibly due to his no-nonsense character. One such ugly face-off was with Shahid Afridi in 2007 led to permanent souring of relations between the two men.