Indian captain MS Dhoni said under-fire bowler Ishant Sharma needs to be given time and space to overcome his nightmare performance in India's stunning loss to Australia in the third ODI at Mohali.
India was cruising to victory when Sharma was brought back into the attack to bowl the 48th over. Four sixes and 30 runs from all-rounder James Faulkner later and the match had swung drastically in the visitor's favour.
But already under pressure to retain his place for the remaining four matches of the series, Dhoni would hope is words could make things a little better for Sharma.
Also, the seamer found some support in Faulkner, who sympathised with Sharma and asken him "not to worry, as it happens to everybody".
But many on social media were neither forgiving, nor understanding.
What's more Twitter, Facebook and even Whatsapp were gushing with jokes, some of them out of line.
Working professional and cricket buff Pranav Joshi's Facebook status read: "Thank you Ishant Sharma, for proving how useless you are. Just realized that Perth 2008 is now a long, long way in the past. You should ideally never play for India again."
On a similar note, college student Zainab wrote on Facebook: Faulkner smoked #IshantSharma for 30 runs in one over! Astonishing!
In fact, some used Twitter to make their point loud and clear- it was Sharma who cost India the match, and he should be shown the way out.
Twitter user Nisarg M Mehta tweeted: "Please bring back Sreeshant and replace with #IshantSharma. Atleast he will fix the match and make our team win."
Another tweet read: "Can you blame the guy? He couldn't really see which side he was playing for!"
Here go the tweets:
Dont know whether Indian Cricket team will find a replacement for Sachin, but it surely has found replacement for Ashish Nehra #IshantSharma— Ashwin ™ (@Ashwin_Speeds) October 19, 2013
Windows Media Player: Still a better player than Ishant Sharma.— Sir Ravindra Jadeja (@SirJadeja) October 20, 2013
Now I know why Ishant Sharma is struggling. RT and Share... pic.twitter.com/eX6QWHZYlz— GAYATRl REDDY (@Gayatritwit) October 20, 2013
Cricket legend Sunil gavaskar too joined in the chorus when he said: "The problem is that we keep judging Ishant on the great spell he bowled to Ricky Ponting in Australia in 2008. But it has been five years since that spell and if he can't replicate it then I think we need to look for someone else."
Jokes, taunts and suggestions apart, few did stand up for the fast bowler.
Twitter user Anisha wrote: "Yesterday #IshantSharma n #MSDhoni were trending!! definitely fr distinct reasons.. even today #IshantSharma is trending.. Stop it guyss!!
Imagine one bad day at work and having the entire nation wanting you to quit. That's the life of a sportsman. Poor #IshantSharma— Indranil Das Blah (@indranildasblah) October 20, 2013
— Sridhar (@mrbean4friends) October 20, 2013
Sick of these Ishant Sharma jokes. Stop it! OK, stop it! Do you even know how hard it is for a Yeti to fit into human society?— Sorabh Pant (@hankypanty) October 20, 2013
Don't blame Ishant Sharma. It is actually the systematic death of bowlers in shorter-formats for public entertainment. Read the rules!— Sanjay Jha (@JhaSanjay) October 20, 2013
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(With agency inputs)