Pat Cummins Recalls “A Compliment Turned Controversy” On Social Media Over Virat Kohli
By CricShots - Jun 3, 2024 12:22 pm
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Virat Kohli, the star Indian cricketer, enjoys an unparalleled level of fame and adoration among fans, standing shoulder to shoulder with global sports icons like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. At 35, Kohli is not just a cricketer but a phenomenon, almost revered by Indian fans. This fan fervour was highlighted by Australia’s captain, Pat Cummins, who shared his experiences dealing with the passionate and sometimes intense Kohli supporters.

Pat Cummins
Pat Cummins

Cummins recounted an incident that illustrates the fervor of Kohli’s fanbase. He remembered making a comment about Kohli that was meant as a compliment. Cummins had praised Kohli as an outstanding player and, in the same breath, expressed hope that Kohli wouldn’t score a century against Australia. This comment, however, did not sit well with Kohli’s fans. When Kohli eventually scored a century, Cummins found himself on the receiving end of an onslaught on social media.

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“If you spend any time on social media, you realize quickly how passionate Kohli’s fans are. Say anything about Virat, and you’re in for a wild ride for the next few years. I remember complimenting him a few years ago, calling him a phenomenal player and hoping he wouldn’t score a century against us. Six months later, when he did score that century, my social media was inundated,” Cummins shared in an interview.

Cummins’ relationship with Indian fans is complex, swinging between admiration and animosity. Indian supporters were disappointed when he led Australia to victory over India in the 2023 ODI World Cup final in Ahmedabad. Yet, the same fans embraced him warmly when he was announced as the captain of the Sunrisers Hyderabad for the 2024 Indian Premier League (IPL) season.

“India feels like a second home to us,” Pat Cummins reflected ahead of the IPL 2024 season. “We spend so much time here, especially during the IPL. You become part of the local teams, and it’s heartening to see the support from fans. Even though there are moments when it feels like everyone is against you, there are just as many times when people come up to me saying they support me because they are from Kolkata or support KKR. It’s nice to feel that not everyone is against you.”

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Pat Cummins’ dual experiences in India—being both a beloved IPL captain and the captain of a rival national team—illustrate the deep and multifaceted nature of cricket fandom in the country. His reflections provide a glimpse into the passionate, often unpredictable world of cricket in India, where players can be both celebrated and critiqued with equal intensity.