Said it in jest: Farokh Engineer does U-turn over Anushka Sharma comment - Report
Former India cricketer Farokh Engineer made a U-turn after his comments regarding national selectors and Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma created huge uproar in the country. Engineer, in an interview to Times of India, had slammed the current Indian selection committee and went on to say that he had seen them serve tea to Anushka during the 2019 ICC World Cup.
After Anushka and chief selector MSK Prasad hit out at Engineer for his remarks, the former India wicket-keeper tried to douse the fire by retracting his comments. In an interview to a TV news channel, Engineer reportedly said he made those comment in the jest of moment.
“I just said it in a jest and it’s being made a mountain out of a molehill,” Engineer was quoted as saying by Republic TV. “Poor Anushka has been dragged into it, she is a lovely girl. Virat Kohli is a brilliant captain and coach Ravi Shastri is extremely good. The entire matter is being blown up unnecessarily. It turned out to be a selector as he was wearing an all India blazer.”
“Yes, this incident had indeed happened. But I am not criticizing Anushka. She is such a lovely and charming lady. A wonderful human being. She and Virat Kohli are role models. I am not her detractor at all. If she has felt offended I apologize to her. I am so sorry if she felt bad. My ire was only against the selectors whom I found probably not doing their job. Nothing against Anushka or Virat,” he added.
Anushka, who is married to Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, was the first to react as she issued a statement on social media. Reacting sharply to comments, Anushka wrote, “And the latest version of these ill intended lies is that I was being served tea by selectors at matches during the World Cup! I came to one game during the World Cup and sat in the family box and not the selectors box as reported. But when has the truth mattered when it’s about convenience!”
Later, MSK Prasad too hit back at Engineer and he told PTI: ““I feel sad for someone deriving sadistic pleasure out of indulging in petty talk, thereby demeaning & disrespecting the selectors and wife of Indian captain through false and frivolous allegations.”
“Let’s not forget that this selection committee has been appointed by BCCI through a proper process in an AGM.
“Someone at the age of 82 should reflect maturity and enjoy the progress of Indian cricket from his time to the current day,” he added.