Being a celebrity is tough in this day and age of social media where every word you utter or write is constantly under scrutiny by fans and detractors. And, if you are top-rated sportsman or filmstar, the responsibility to carry oneself prudently in front of the public eye becomes even more important. One bad move and years of earned reputation turns into ashes.
And, so apart from championing the skills of your niche, it becomes extremely important for the celebrities- especially the newbies- to carry themselves prudently on social media platforms. But, sometimes, we have seen even the most experienced in the field tend to lose it, making them post or write something on social media that they are eventually forced to delete following a furor or backlash.
This article aims to look at five such instances where cricketers posted controversial tweets which they eventually deleted after a furor-
5. Hasan Ali
From his controversial celebratory moves; one that almost resembles someone blowing himself up to making outrageous claims [taking all the ten wickets of India. Ok! Sorry. We know what happened after that.], Pakistan all-rounder Hasan Ali has always been in the news for his off-field shenanigans rather than his on-field antics.
The Pakistani all-rounder, who created an unwanted record for himself by becoming the first bowler to conceded the most number of runs in a World Cup innings for Pakistan, accidentally backed India to win the 2019 World Cup and later had to backtrack his words on social media after the outrage back home.
After India had beaten Pakistan- for the 7th time- in a World Cup encounter at Manchester earlier this year, an Indian journalist tweeted congratulated Kohli and his men for their comprehensive win against the Pakistanis. Replying to the tweet, a;-rounder Hasan Ali [1-84 from 9 vs India] said: Hogi ap ki dua puri congratulation.” The all-rounder later deleted the tweet following an outrage back home.
4. James Neesham
Kiwi all-rounder James Neesham is quite a personality both on and off the field. The all-rounder is quite a laugh riot on Social media courtesy his wit and hilarious interactions with both fans and fellow cricketers.
But one tweet from Neesham regarding MS Dhoni’s run-out during the 2019 IPL final, did not go down with the fans and the all-rounder was heavily trolled before he finally took the tweet down.
The 2019 IPL final was a humdinger with Mumbai Indians edging out Chennai Super Kings by one run. One of the biggest talking points and probably the turning point of the game came during CSK’s innings when MS Dhoni was dismissed for 2 in the 13th over when he found himself short of the crease courtsey a direct throw from Ishan Kishan.
The decision by the third umpire divided the cricket fans on social media. Responding to the run-out, Neesham took to his social media account to express what he felt about the incident.
“I love how passionate some fans are about our sport. I have huge respect for MS but how anyone could see the below photo and say it’s not out truly astounds me.” The all-rounder also attached a photo that showed an angle which suggested Dhoni was well short of his crease.
That's exactly why he is asking you to google. Grow up Jimmy 😜
— Ganesh V (@ganeshkyaba) May 13, 2019
The tweet, off-course, did not go down with Dhoni’s fans and the all-rounder was trolled on social media for the same, forcing him to eventually take down the tweet with a statement that said: “I’m sick of seeing the same dumb comments in my feed 200 times a day. I just don’t actually care.”
3. Mushfiqur Rahim
When Mushfiqur Rahim retires from professional cricket, he can perhaps write a book on ‘ Why celebrating your win prematurely or rejoicing in other sides’ defeat is not aa good idea’. Rahim, off-course learned it the harsh way during the summer of 2016. First: The pre-mature celebration. Bangladesh and India have been involved in a plethora of nail-biting encounters in white-ball cricket in recent years with the underdog punching above their weights before wilting away under pressure at the last hurdle.
The most prudent example of it was the 2016 World Twenty20 to encounter between the two sides at the Chinnaswamy in Bengaluru. With Bangladesh requiring 10 off the last over, Mushfiqur Rahim creamed Hardik Pandya for consecutive boundaries to bring the equation down to 2 off 3 balls. But, Rahim after hitting the second boundaries got carried away; celebrating like his team had already won the game. That reflected in the shot that he played off the very next ball- a wild heave over square-leg to bring about his downfall. Bangladesh eventually lost the game by one run, giving India a jailbreak and Rahim, a lesson that one should never get ahead of himself both in cricket as well as in life.
The matter did not end here, though. A few days later, India went on to lose the semi-finals to the West Indies at Wankhede. Rahim devasted from what has happened a few days ago and chuffed by India’s loss took to social media to express his ecstasy at seeing India lose. The tweet, for its distasteful tone, did not go down well with the fans across the cricketing spectrum and Rahim was heavily criticized and trolled for the same.
“Sorry to all of you guys…as I am a big West Indies supporter but anyway sorry again for some harsh words…!!!!”
Following a massive backlash, Rahim apologized for his harsh words but defended his tweet, stating it was more out of elation for his favorite team [West Indies] and eventually deleted the distasteful tweet.
2. Junaid Khan
This is what the Pakistani left-arm seamer- Junaid Khan tweeted after having received a last-minute snub by the national selectors for the 2019 World Cup. Junaid followed that tweet with an image of him that showed his lips clad with black tape.
OK, Amir is a good bowler.
When Original World Cup Squad was announced I was 100% Sure that they will drop #JunaidKhan and Amir will play #WorldCup2019 pic.twitter.com/0x16Bl2DRA
— Bil Al🇵🇰 (@Bilal_abbasid) May 20, 2019
Junaid, sealing his lips alongside a cryptic tweet was symbolic of the favoritism, lack of merit in the selection and nepotism- the common accusation against the Inzamam-led selection unit. Khan, who was selected in the preliminary 15-member squad for the World Cup was booted out of reckoning along with Abid Ali and Faheem Ashraf in favor of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz; the latter wasn’t even in the scheme of things for the past two years.
Junaid’s tweet immediately went viral on Twitter and considering its potential for a massive stir-up, Khan took down the tweet hours later.
1. Harbhajan Singh
Controversy and Harbhajan Singh have never been obscure to each other. The Turbanator has never been averse to the controversy on or off the field. From Monkeygate to banging Sreesanth to almost coming up to blows with Ambati Rayudu during an IPL match, Bhajji has seen it all.
And, now that the former spinner does not play, he uses social media perfectly to rake up a new tussle. The past month has been the month for hattricks. The likes of Bumrah, Malinga and Southern Stars bowler Megan Schutt edged their names in the annals of history while Kemar Roach and Pat Cummins came excruciatingly close to achieving the same. On this occasion, a fan on Twitter posted a video of the 2001 Kolkata Test where Bhajji became the first Indian to take a hat-trick in five-day cricket.
No DRS 😩 https://t.co/3XsCqk9ZiR
— Adam Gilchrist (@gilly381) August 31, 2019
One of the batsmen who was dismissed during the hattrick- Adam Gilchrist- took a cheeky dig at the video lamenting the absence of DRS during the time. Bhajji, who felt that Gilly was trying to question the hattrick replied asking him to “stop crying” over the dismissal.
The off-spinner, however, deleted the tweet before going on a rant accusing Gilly of “always crying” and that the former wicket-keeper wouldn’t have survived the spell even if the DRS had been placed. He, however, deleted this tweet too after backlash from the fans.
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