Shoaib Akhtar criticised for 'insulting' Pakistan team on Comedy Nights with Kapil

Published: March 4, 2015
Shoaib Akhtar and Harbhajan Singh on Comedy Nights with Kapil PHOTO:

Shoaib Akhtar and Harbhajan Singh on Comedy Nights with Kapil PHOTO:

Former paceman Shoaib Akhtar is under fire yet again after criticising Pakistani cricketers as well as the cricket board’s top management on popular Indian TV show Comedy Nights With Kapil.

The Rawalpindi Express not only took jibes at the Akmal brothers, making fun of their fielding, but also cracked jokes about how some of the senior Pakistani players cannot speak English properly.



Shoaib’s criticism didn’t go well with Pakistani fans, king of comedy Umer Sharif in particular, who said he was deeply hurt that the fast bowler insulted the cricket team on an Indian show. The renowned artiste spoke about Shoaib’s comments on his show Har Lamha Purjosh on ARY News. Umer Sharif addressed Shoaib as “marhoom” saying the former cricket was dead to the nation after his harsh remarks.



Twitter too was abuzz after the episode of Comedy Nights with Kapil was aired which also featured Indian bowler Harbhajan Singh.




But some, on the other hand, attributed Pakistan team’s fantastic performance against UAE on Wednesday to Shoaib’s “encouraging remarks”.

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Reader Comments (27)

  • karachi
    Mar 4, 2015 - 2:23PM

    We really need to get a grip. Learn to laugh at ourselves a little. Recommend

  • Raisani
    Mar 4, 2015 - 2:50PM

    Shoaib was in an unsuccessful attempt of pleasing Indians by degrading himself but still nobody found him funny or kool which he was pretending to be.
    Again one word for him “Over-smart”. Recommend

  • Anon
    Mar 4, 2015 - 2:52PM

    He did not say a single negative word about any Indian player but instead very awkwardly tried to say something good about them whenever he mentioned them but had no qualms about spewing rubbish about anything to do with Pakistan cricket.He showed great respect for his income stream but none for his team! I guess latoon kay bhoot batooon say nahi mantay. Pkaistanis should let him know his behavior has consequences just like the it seems the Indians have made it very clear to him Recommend

  • Pity
    Mar 4, 2015 - 3:14PM

    Well said Umer Sharif!!Recommend

  • Jhakaas
    Mar 4, 2015 - 3:17PM

    Yeah I agree we need to laugh at ourselves more; but Shoaib should’ve should’ve been telling stories about the Indian side! This was just a bit too much one sided and everyone from Harbajhan to Kapil to Shoaib making fun of Pakistan and its players, made it look like Pakistan was full of illiterate clowns and jokers whereas India was perfect. When Harbajhan said “The series were going 4-0 for India as usual” Shoaib should have quoted the statistic that Pakistan has won more games to India. That’s how banter works between friends, and the Indian audiences would’ve been more than happy to hear incidences about their team no doubt.Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Mar 4, 2015 - 3:24PM

    completely agreed, needless ruckus raised over shoaibs remarks. Omer sharif who is trying to act all clean and righteous is himself banned in india for hurting hindu sentiments there which I think is a far bigger offence. We Pakistanis need to have a big heart and learn to laugh at our fallings if there’s to be any chance of our growing as a nation. Recommend

  • Ali S
    Mar 4, 2015 - 3:36PM

    Our so-called analysts on TV’s are crying themselves hoarse over lambasting the cricketers at every opportunity – but Shoaib does a little joke on them (in poor taste, admittedly) and gets thrown under the bus because he’s on an Indian show? Get a sense of humour… and some cricketing skills while you’re at itRecommend

  • azmat
    Mar 4, 2015 - 4:24PM

    I absolutely abhore the idea of criticising our players for their lack of English skills. They are not meant to be fluent in English rather they have to be good at playing the game and that is the criteriat they should be judged against. Classis example is that of the great Inzi – Always short of words when it came to talking in English but when it came to cricket, even the Englishmen would find them selves short of words to praise him. The world does not want to know about how good you are at talking in English. As someone puts it very aptly “even their dogs understand English” so why would they fall for anyone’s English skills. The world respects Saeed Ajmal, Inzi, Saqlain, Qadir and many more because of their contributions to cricket not for speaking good English. I have no problem with anyone making fun of their performances or fitness but I take a strong exception if they get criticised for their poor English. It just shows the inferiority complex that we suffer from as a nation. Indians are far better than us in this aspect. Recommend

  • kashan
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:05PM

    They got what they deserve, be it Shoaib on Indian TV show or Boota from Toba tek singh amongst his friends if you them give a chance you have to face it, and PCB has worked really hard to earn this criticism it would be unfair if we keep them deprived of what they deserve. I wonder why he left Nawaz and his cronies though!Recommend

  • Adil Uddin
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:11PM

    When the same Shoaib Akhtar wrote something about Sachin Tendulkar in his autobiogtaphy saying that he’s not a God of cricket then many Indians went insane and showed the Shiv Sena attitude . As per their logic criticizing Sachin is as good as insulting India and all formats of free speech become invalid .
    Even copies of his book were removed from the shelves in MumbaiRecommend

  • Danyal
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:22PM

    I would agree with the whole “don’t take it too hard” idea if the show targeted Indian players as harshly as it targeted the Pakistanis. Even when joking around, Harbajan never said a word to make his team look bad. Even his jokes made the Indian cricket team seem superior as he said “the scenario was usual, you know, India led the series 3-0, 4-0 etc”, while Shoaib awkwardly clapped beside him.
    So I definitely agree with Umar Sharif. The jokes in the show were only targeting Pakistani players while the Indian team was almost free from any criticism. Shoaib’s attitude in that show is less of something to be taken as a joke by Pakistanis and more of something that damages his credibility as a critic of our team and our society. I’d tell him to learn to represent Pakistan in a more respectful manner next time he’s in India. Recommend

  • Ayesha
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:33PM

    Most over rated player in the history of Pak cricket .. He is just being an attention seeker these days .. can do anything to stay in media .. One day, he called misbah coward ,the next he called him key player. He has not only lost his career but his mind as well.

    No respect for this oversmart, over rated player.Recommend

  • turbo
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:34PM

    well what he said about PCB leadership is correct. PM appoints likes of Najam Sethi as PCB chairman who has not played street cricket properly in his life. Isn’t that hilarious?Recommend

  • Zaidi
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:41PM

    For those who think that we as Pakistanis cant take humour and are lashing out at Shoaib’s remarks they are completely ignoring the point that it was not about what he said, rather than where he said it all. He chose the wrong platform. Indians who believe them to be superior than everyone else got another chance to mock at us. We dont need enemies to tell us what we are not good at when we have people like Shoaib Akhtar doing their jobs. Shame on you Shoaib AkhtarRecommend

  • Sham
    Mar 4, 2015 - 5:57PM

    Why is Shoaib Akhtar’s name being pulled into this ? Did you guys not watch the episode where Wasim Akram did the same ??? Learn to laugh and chill out ! These are candid jokes which no one should take offence to.Recommend

  • Khan
    Mar 4, 2015 - 6:01PM

    It was a comedy show, and it should not be taken seriously. What I don’t like is how he comes on national television and spews personal hatred against his former teammates. It’s always something personal and never an unbiased, subjective analysis. He’s just venting out his frustration from his playing days, and we have to listen to it. That’s more worrying.Recommend

  • Baba Jee
    Mar 4, 2015 - 7:15PM

    I am bit confused with the criticism coming from Umer Sharif who himself had made fun of his country in numerous stage and TV appearances in India!!!!Recommend

  • Anum
    Mar 4, 2015 - 7:54PM

    No he’s not just venting out his frustration.. he’s being over smart to please Indians even at the cost of insulting his country. Even Indian cricket team has many flaws if you come to personal , yet the show didn’t make fun of their nationals…then why is he choosing an anti – Pakistan overconfident state giving them another chance of having pride?!Recommend

    Mar 4, 2015 - 8:11PM

    Downright silly. Our own Media have been much more insulting.Recommend

  • Maestro
    Mar 4, 2015 - 8:19PM

    Ever notice how Indians in general love to abuse Pakistan and Pakistanis? This is a pretty normal in their country which is very different to how Pakistanis are with Indians. Just contrast this with when any of their stars come to Pakistan. How much respect we give them as we should? I am not saying that we need to hate on them or stoop to their level, but in my general interaction with them in the west I have noted that it is better to to deal with them with your foot on their throat, so to speak. It generally keeps them in their place. It is a popular perception about Indians even amongst the Westerners and I have found it pretty true as well.

    Peace. Recommend

  • Timorlane
    Mar 4, 2015 - 9:04PM

    What about our Pakistani team insulting Pakistan in front of the whole world???

    And what about thugs like Moin Khan insulting Pakistan in front of the world ??

    We are miserable hypocrites and deserve this team and Moin Khans as long as we don’t change ourselvesRecommend

  • Longislander
    Mar 4, 2015 - 9:42PM

    I don’t think there is anything wrong with him making fun of Pakistani players. What I don’t like is how he was giving respect to the Indian side. It seem like he was trying to please the Indian audience. Recommend

  • Anjum
    Mar 4, 2015 - 9:45PM

    Healthy criticism is always healthy. But Shoab has been a rude with his remarks. While undoubtedly there are problems with the current cricketing lot of Pakistan. Leadership issues tops the chart. Misbah is an entirely wrong choice for captain. He does play his innings intermittently but that’s what he is good at and that’s what Shoab is right about. A good captain needs to understand the psychology of his fellows and boost their morale when they are going through a tough time.

    Remarks about the team members’ speech is downright uncalled for and amount to a big ego problem in Shoab which is way worse than speaking good English.
    During his days in the team he wasn’t an inspiration except for bowling speedy balls. He wasn’t consistent both on field and off it. Wasn’t he the one seen enjoying ‘cricketing time’ with blondes in skimpy clothes?
    Rude remarks is not what Pakistan cricket needs but encouragement and good suggestions . If Shoab has some respect for the game that made him ‘Rawalpindi express’ he ought mind his mind and tongue and not speak the language of an enemy !! Recommend

  • Mar 4, 2015 - 11:53PM

    S. Akhtar.. A God Gifted most talented Fastest bowler who himself ruined his career with all sorts of controversies, ill-disciplined, fighting with team-mates. where he should have picked at least 400 wickets in both ODI’s n Tests and failed to win a single ICC for Pakistan…Flop Cricketer..Now a cheap Commentator…Recommend

  • JB
    Mar 5, 2015 - 12:58PM

    No doubt Shoaib Akhtar was an amazing talent when it came to the field but doing this just shows a poor attempt to get 15 minutes of fame…did he forget his own fitness issues? playing one match and then sitting out the next four? Or his own fielding? And has he even heard his own english??Recommend

  • Nasir
    Mar 5, 2015 - 5:53PM

    I think there is no point condemning Shaib on this episode.Though I have mostly seen him being ruthlessly thrashed by the batsmen, nevertheless we must pay due regards to his few very fast deliveries. Moreover, may be its not his fault but his limited mental faculties and low education/ calibre that he inadvertently hurt the whole nation. May be his intention was not bad but he just couldn’t comprehend that insulting Pakistan in India was a crime which even a criminal Pakistani would not forgive. Or may be he thought that by appeasing Indians he would win their goodwill but forgot that after using him they will throw him like FL.Recommend

  • lucid
    Mar 6, 2015 - 5:34PM

    This is why they say, don’t drink (and talk) :)Recommend

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