'Do not poke the bear' - Jones warns Australia over Kohli

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Dean Jones has warned Australia not to engage in verbals with Virat Kohli in India by saying "do not, I say do not poke the bear, because the bear will bite you big."

Australia captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner have had run-ins with the India skipper Kohli in recent years as tempers flared on the field on more than one occasion.

Smith said his side plan to try and ruffle imperious Kohli's feathers by letting their cricket do the talking when the two sides renew their rivalry in a four-match series that starts in Pune on February 23.

Kohli maintained his phenomenal form as his side hammered England 4-0 on home soil late last year to remain at the top of the Test rankings.

And straight-talking former Australia batsman Jones said Smith and his team-mates would be well advised to stay silent when they come up against the prolific strokemaker.

Asked about a potential war of words with Kohli, Jones told Omnisport: "Do not, I say do not poke the bear, because the bear will bite you and bite you big.

"I like what we did to many a player [during his Australia career]. We said nothing in the field when a batsman came out.

"If Viv Richards and these guys were in the middle we said nothing, absolute silence. If a guy plays and misses we say nothing.

"The silent treatment has worked in the past and that might be a good way to go with Virat."

Jones also expressed his admiration for Kohli, who has become a national treasure in India.

"He's so inspirational to the kids out there." Jones added.

"You've got footage of him smashing it to all parts in all formats of the game, lifting 150kg, he's got an unbelievable fitness regime for a kid who was not that fit he takes great pride in his body and appearance.

"He's very, very professional and a great leader. When in doubt he goes out there and makes the runs."

- Dean Jones new book "Dean Jones Cricket Tips" - (The things they don't teach you in the academy) is available via Amazon.