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HomeCricketIPLRavichandran Ashwin slams fans for going too far in Rohit Sharma-Hardik Pandya fan war,...

Ravichandran Ashwin slams fans for going too far in Rohit Sharma-Hardik Pandya fan war, asks if they have seen this with fans of cricketers from any other country

"Neither has any role to play. Neither the franchise nor the player has a role to play in this at all. I think the responsibility and the onus lie on the fans," Ashwin said on his YouTube channel.

Indian veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin slammed fans for going too far in the “fan war” between Mumbai Indians (MI) skipper Hardik Pandya and the franchise’s former five-time IPL-winning skipper Rohit Sharma.

Hardik Pandya moved to MI, a franchise that made him a star just last year. This came after spending two great years with the Gujarat Titans, a new franchise, during which he won them the title as a captain in its debut season back in 2022 and led them to the finals the next year. On his return to MI, he also replaced Rohit as its skipper.

While head coach Mark Boucher has clarified that the move is meant to help Rohit play with more freedom following some underwhelming seasons with the bat, many fans have expressed that MI and Pandya have betrayed Rohit. Ahead of the IPL season and while it is going on, fans of both players have engaged in online abuse against each other’s preferred players.

It has escalated to live action as well, with Pandya getting booed and abused during his side’s matches both online and on the field. In his YouTube channel, Ashwin said that both the franchise and the player have no role to play in this fan-war and the onus is on the fans to act responsibly. He questioned if there have been any instances of fan wars between players’ fanbases abroad and opined that the fan wars have gotten ugly.

“Neither has any role to play. Neither the franchise nor the player has a role to play in this at all. I think the responsibility and the onus lie on the fans,” Ashwin said on his YouTube channel.

“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 have said this many times. This is cricket. This is a cinema culture. I know there are things like marketing, positioning and branding. I do not deny it. I do not believe in all this on my side but it is not wrong to indulge either. Fan wars should never go down this ugly route. One should remember which country these players represent–our country. So then what warrants a cricketer getting booed?” Ashwin added.

He questioned why a team should come with a clarification about a player and a captaincy saga when legendary cricketers like Saurav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble and MS Dhoni, etc. have played under youngsters or each other’s captaincy. over the years.

“I do not 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,” he said.

Ashwin said that the fans need to get their act together and enjoy their favourite players without putting the other player down.

“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 have someone else to pick up the trash. We do not want to bother doing it ourselves. We should correct ourselves first. This is real-time sports. Real-time sports have real-time emotions. How we go beyond that, counter it and find a balance to play cricket is what this is all about,” said Ashwin.

“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 would love to see disappear from the face of the earth in our country,” Ashwin concluded.

Meanwhile, MI have started their season with two losses in two games against the Gujarat Titans (GT) and Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). Their next match is against Rajasthan Royals (RR) in their home arena of Wankhede Stadium on April 1.

(This news report is published from a syndicated feed. Except for the headline, the content has not been written or edited by OpIndia staff)

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