Dubai: Racism in Indian cricket? It may sound strange as it didn’t have to do with ethnicity, but a darker skin colour had often subjected at least two of India’s well known cricketers to obnoxious taunts in the past.
India batsman Abhinav Mukund and former fast bowler Dodda Ganesh opened up to facing ‘racial jibes’ on the cricket field in social media at a time when George Floyd death has caused massive outrage in the United States.
Ganesh shared Mukund’s revelations on his Twitter handle, which the latter had posted in 2017. Ganesh said he himself was subject to such taunts during his playing days but he couldn’t have cared less.
“This story of @mukundabhinav reminded me of the racial jibes I went through in my playing days. Only an Indian legend was witness to it. It only made me strong & didn’t deter me from playing for Ind & ovr 100 mts for Karnataka,” Ganesh tweeted.
An opening batsman from the southern state of Tamil Nadu, Mukund’s statement from August 9, 2017 read: “I have been travelling a lot within and outside our country since I was 15. Ever since I was young, people’s obsession with my skin colour has always been a mystery to me. Anyone who follows cricket would understand the obvious. I have played and trained day in and day out in the sun and not once have I regretted the fact that I have tanned or lost a couple of shades. It is simply because I love what I do and I have been able to achieve certain things only because I have spent hours outdoor. I come from Chennai, probably one of the hottest places in our country and I have gladly spent most of my adult life in the cricket ground.
“I have laughed and shrugged it off because I had bigger goals! Affected young, I toughened up because this was never something that would pull me down. There were many times when I chose not to dignify these insults with responses. With the rise of social media, it has gone to a magnitude that I see people hurling abuses left, right and centre at something I have absolutely no control over. Fair isn’t the only lovely or handsome guys. Stay true, stay focused, be comfortable in your own skin.”