Former Indian wicket-keeper Farokh Engineer has come to the support of Sunil Gavaskar. Gavaskar has been facing huge backlash for comments he made on Anushka Sharma, the wife of cricketer Virat Kohli.
While commentating in the ongoing 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL), Gavaskar had stated that Kohli was looking out of touch because he had practiced only to the bowling of Anushka Sharma over the course of the Covid lockdown.
His comments were branded “distasteful” with Anushka Sharma herself calling him out.
Farokh Engineer defends Sunil Gavaskar
While speaking to ‘Pakistan Observer’, Enginner jumped to Gavaskar’s defence saying, “We, Indians lack a sense of humour. If Sunil had indeed said so about Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli, it must have been in a humourous tone and not in bad or derogatory taste. Knowing Sunil Gavaskar well, I’m sure he would have said it jokingly.”
He added, “Even in my case, people took it very seriously with the result that Anushka had to come out with her statement” referring to his own comments during the 2019 Cricket World Cup where Engineer had found himself in a similar controversy after saying that the Indian selectors were drinking “Anushka’s tea” and doing nothing else.
Gavaskar himself had clarified his statements following criticism from the public and from Anushka herself. He said, “As you hear from the commentary, Aakash and I were doing commentary for the Hindi channel. And Aakash was talking about the fact that there has been very little chance for proper practice for everybody.
“That has actually shown in the rustiness of some of the players in their first matches. Rohit didn’t strike the ball well in his first match, MSD didn’t strike the ball well, Virat also didn’t strike the ball. Most of the batsmen have because of the lack of practice.
“That was the point that was being made. Virat also had no practice and the only practice that they had when they were seen them playing in their building compound and Anushka was bowling to him. That’s what I said. That’s the only bowling, I have not used any other word. She was bowling to him, that’s all.” Gavaskar further, went on to ask, “Where am I blaming her? Where am I being sexist in this?“