Indian cricketer Sunil Gavaskar recently clarified that his reference to Virat Kohli’s actor-wife Anushka Sharma during his commentary was not to blame her for the Indian cricket team captain’s poor performance.
On Friday, Gavaskar, in an interview with India Today, had said, “Aakash (Chopra) and I were talking about very little practice for everybody which has shown in rustiness for Rohit, MS Dhoni, Virat…everyone in the first match. Where am I blaming her? Where am I being sexist? I am only stating what was seen in the video. If somebody has interpreted it differently, what can I do?”
When Gavaskar’s comments first started doing the rounds on social media, he had indeed been misquoted, reported Hindustan Times. Sharma, however, has often been subject to vicious trolling over Kohli’s performances which may have led to her instant riposte.
It all started during Thursday night’s IPL match, when Gavaskar mockingly referred to a viral video of Sharma and Kohli on social media to criticise Kohli’s performance. The clip showed Kohli batting in the driveway of his house with Sharma bowling.
He said, “Ab jo lockdown tha, to sirf Anushka ki bowling ki practice ki unhone. Wo dikha video main, us se to kuch nahi ban na hai (During the lockdown, he was practicing only on Anushka’s bowling and that won’t get him anywhere).”
Hours after Gavaskar made the comments on-air, Sharma took to Instagram to express her displeasure over the same. She put a strongly-worded statement on her Instagram story, asking him to explain why he accused her for Kohli’s failure. Taking a dig at Gavaskar, the actor also made it clear that she is fed up of being dragged into cricket whenever her husband fails to perform.
“That, Mr Gavaskar, your message is distasteful is a fact but I would love for you to explain why you thought of making such a sweeping statement on a wife, accusing her of her husband’s game? I’m sure over the years, you have respected the private lives of every cricketer while commentating on the game,” wrote the Sultan star. “Don’t you think you should have an equal amount of respect for us? I’m sure you can have many other words and sentences in your mind to use to comment on my husband’s performance from last night or are your words only relevant if you use my name in the process?”
Sharma concluded, “It’s 2020 and things still don’t change for me. When will I stop getting dragged into cricket and being used to pass sweeping statements? Respected Mr Gavaskar, you are a legend whose name stands tall in this gentleman’s game. Just wanted to tell you what I felt when I heard you say this.”
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