Anil Kumble
A file picture of Anil Kumble.Reuters

In May this year, there was a report in the media that the then Indian coach Anil Kumble had created a WhatsApp group with journalists and was "leaking" team information to them. While Kumble had not spoken about that till now, he chose to break his silence today (December 16).

Due to differences with captain Virat Kohli, Kumble quit as India coach in June this year after the ICC Champions Trophy.

On Saturday, in Bengaluru, Kumble won the "Coach of the Year" honour at Sports Writers Association of Bangalore (SWAB) annual awards ceremony 2017. And here, he chose to say "sorry" to the journalists.

India's highest wicket-taker in Tests and ODIs, Kumble took a dig at those who spread the rumour about WhatsApp group.

After receiving the award, he praised Virat Kohli-led India and backed them to create history in South Africa, where they play three Tests. And before he walked off the stage with his trophy, there came the parting shot, referring to WhatsApp group.

"Sorry to all journalists for not putting you all in my WhatsApp group," Kumble said.

The story which was doing the rounds in May was that Kumble had created a WhatsApp group with his "few trusted media friends".

"We've been told that there is a WhatsApp group created by Kumble of his few trusted media friends and few confidential talks between him and senior players were leaked through that" an unnamed senior official of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) was quoted as saying by "DNA" newspaper.

On June 20, Kumble stepped down as India's coach. He was appointed by BCCI in 2016 for one-year period. Currently, the team is coached by Ravi Shastri. He was chosen after Kumble's exit.