Any sport has the tendency to turn sour in the blink of an eye. Primarily, through a section of fans who make sports a matter of life and death. Rather than viewing it as an activity that promotes sportsmanship and camaraderie. Cricket is no exception.
Winning and losing is a part of any sport. However, blaming women for someone’s bad performance on the pitch is utterly sexist. It is also a case of misplaced anger. In recent times, women have faced online trolling, received hate messages, and even rape and death threats from toxic fans who took things into their own hands. Here are six times when women faced the brunt after someone’s loss in cricket.
1. When Shubman Gill’s sister received abusive messages after RCB’s knockout from IPL 2023.
Shubman Gill delivered a terrific performance that cemented the Gujarat Titans’ position in the IPL. But that win meant that RCB lost the match and had to exit the league. Post RCB’s loss, toxic fandoms spammed Shubman Gill’s sister’s Instagram comments with the vilest messages.
2. When Anushka Sharma was blamed for Virat Kohli’s poor performance on-field.
Not only people but also some publications have time and again blamed Anushka Sharma for Virat Kohli’s poor performance on the field. Some called her a “distraction” and said that she has impacted his game negatively. Kohli had to put up a social media post where he called out people and said that Anushka has “only motivated and given me more positivity.”
3. When Geeta Basra opened up about cricketers’ spouses being targeted by trolls.
Geeta Basra spoke about how die-hard fans of the sport need some kind of excuse or scapegoat. For them, wives and girlfriends are a “soft target.” Geeta, who has been trolled for Harbhajan Singh’s performance, added that wives are not going and playing for them, neither are they a part of the team or training them.
4. When Mayanti Langer had to take to Twitter after trolls told her to “divorce” Stuart Binny.
Back in 2016 when Stuart Binny was hit for five consecutive sixes by West Indies’ Evin Lewis during India’s 20-20 match, trolls heckled his wife, Mayanti Langer. Some left the most abusive of messages. While others asked her to divorce her husband because she had been a bad influence on his game. The sports journalist took to her Twitter and shared a note.
5. When Athiya Shetty was blamed for KL Rahul’s performance.
When India lost against England in the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup 2022, some fans blamed Athiya Shetty for KL Rahul’s performance. KL Rahul opened the match and he was only able to score five runs. Some fans called Athiya “bad luck” for the cricketer.
6. When MS Dhoni’s wife and daughter received rape threats after CSK lost to KKR.
Back in 2020, when CSK lost to KKR in an IPL match, some trolls took to social media platforms and shared abusive and threatening messages about his wife and his five-year-old child! These trolls took to MS Dhoni‘s social media handles and spammed it with abusive messages for Ziva. How shameful is that?
Some fans really need to learn to chill.