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  5. Ravichandran Ashwin voices support for Hardik Pandya amid unrelenting flak

Ravichandran Ashwin voices support for Hardik Pandya amid unrelenting flak

Hardik Pandya is under a tremendous amount of pressure after Mumbai India's second-consecutive loss of the ongoing 17th season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). The five-time IPL champions are ninth on the points table and are yet to win a game.

Written By: Kumar Rupesh @afiestysoul New Delhi Published on: March 30, 2024 13:17 IST
Hardik Pandya.
Image Source : PTI Hardik Pandya.

Hardik Pandya is experiencing one of his toughest IPL (Indian Premier League) seasons after being appointed as the skipper of Mumbai Indians. The 30-year-old is copping a lot of abuse from spectators on the ground and even netizens are hurling swearwords at him.

Amid all the criticism and abuse, Hardik has found some support from his Team India teammate Ravichandran Ashwin. Ashwin, who plays for Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the Indian Premier League has urged fans to not indulge in wars and abstain from taking the ugly route.

"Have you seen this happen in any other country? Have you seen Joe Root and Zak Crawley fans fight? Or have you seen Joe Root and Jos Buttler fans fight? It’s crazy. Have you seen Steve Smith and Pat Cummins fans fight in Australia? I’ve said this many times. This is cricket. This is a cinema culture. I know there are things like marketing, positioning and branding. I don’t deny it. I don’t believe in all this on my side but it’s not wrong to indulge either," said Ashwin on his YouTube channel.

"Fan wars should never go in this ugly a route. One should remember which country these players represent- our country. So then what warrants a cricketer getting booed?” Ashwin added.

Ashwin also mentioned that he doesn't feel Mumbai Indians should come out and issue a clarification to curb the hate that is being directed Hardik's way.

"I don’t understand. If you don’t like a player and boo a player, why should a team come out to issue a clarification? We act like this has not happened before. (Sourav) Ganguly played under Sachin (Tendulkar) and vice versa. These two have both played under Rahul Dravid’s captaincy.

"These three have played under Anil Kumble and all of them have played under Dhoni. When they were under Dhoni, these players were cricket jambhavans (giants). Dhoni too played under Virat," added Ashwin.

Ashwin also urged the fans to enjoy the success of their heroes but "not at the cost of putting another player down" and wished for the trend to disappear from India.

"We need to get our act together. You know what the problem is? We are all happy to sit in our houses, look outside and someone else to pick up the trash. We don’t want to bother doing it ourselves. We should correct ourselves first. This is real-time sports.

"Real times sports have real-time emotions. How we go beyond that, counter it and find balance to play cricket is what this is all about. A real sport can never be compared to cinema. Heroes and hero worships are great. I am all for it. Enjoy what you like about your favourites but not at the cost of putting another player down. This is one thing I’d love to see disappear from the face of the earth in our country," mentioned Ashwin.



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