Gautam Gambhir Tells Fans To Stop Worshiping MS Dhoni And Virat Kohli
Former Indian cricketer and World Cup hero Gautam Gambhir opened up on the issue of "hero worship" in Indian cricket. During an interaction with 'The Indian Express', Gambhir was asked about the topic and he gave examples of Virat Kohli and Bhuvneshwar Kumar from the recent match against Afghanistan in the Asia Cup 2022.
India's match against Afghanistan at the Super 4 stage in Asia Cup 2022 was a dead rubber as both Pakistan and Sri Lanka had qualified for their respective spots in the final clash. The KL Rahul-led side had registered a huge win in that game with Virat Kohli and Bhuvneshwar Kumar playing the role of match-winners.
Coming out to open the innings for India, Virat Kohli scored his much-awaited 71st century, which was also his maiden T20 century, later, Bhuvneshwar Kumar picked a five-wicket haul to help the Indian side win the game. While Virat's knock was hailed by everyone, however, Bhuvi's brilliant spell went completely unnoticed.
Giving the example of these two, Gambhir highlighted the "hero worship" issue in the Indian cricket. He said:
“When Kohli got a 100 and there was this young guy from a small town of Meerut (Bhuvneshwar Kumar) who also managed to get five wickets, no one even bothered to speak about him. This was so unfortunate. I was the only one, during that commentary stint, who said that. He bowled four overs and got five wickets and I don't think anyone knows about that. But Kohli scores a 100 and there are celebrations everywhere in this country. India needs to come out of this hero worship. Whether it's Indian cricket, whether it's politics, whether it's Delhi cricket. We have to stop worshipping heroes. The only thing that we need to worship is Indian cricket, or for that matter Delhi or India"
He added: “Who created that? It is created by two things. First, by social media followers, which is probably the fakest thing in this country because you are judged by how many followers you have. That is what creates a brand,"
Further, he added: “Second, by the media and the broadcasters. If you keep talking about one person day in and day out, it eventually becomes a brand. That is how it was in 1983. Why start from Dhoni? It started in 1983. When India won the first World Cup, it was all about Kapil Dev. When we won in 2007 and 2011, it was Dhoni. Who created that? None of the players did. Nor did the BCCI. Have the news channels and broadcasters ever spoken about Indian cricket? Have we ever spoken that Indian cricket needs to flourish? There are more than two or three people who are stakeholders of Indian cricket. They don't rule Indian cricket, they should not be ruling Indian cricket. Indian cricket should be ruled by the 15 people sitting in that dressing room. Everyone has a contribution to make … … I've never been able to follow anyone in my life. And that has been my biggest problem. The media and the broadcasters create a brand, no one else creates a brand,"