Celebs and cricketing world rushes to Sarfaraz’s defence
Pakistani sports fans are super passionate.
They get wild about their wins, can analyse matches better than most sports commentators, and take every loss as a personal defeat. A flip side to this passion, however, is the extent to which they can express their intense investment – especially in the cricketing world.
Times have been tough for the Pakistan cricket team in the 2019 World Cup: after a single meaningful victory against England, the team’s good fortune took a turn for the worst.
A terrible loss against India on June 16, left the national cricket team berated, abused and completely downtrodden. The usual match analyses were replaced by insults and bullying directed at the team, their incompetence, their fitness and at captain Sarfaraz Ahmed. A Pakistani fan even filed a petition in the Gujranwala Civil Court against the cricket team, seeking a ban on the entire squad.
However, this chain of ongoing backlash has turned into harassment for the cricketers, especially for the captain. Sarfaraz Ahmed, accompanied by his son, was insulted in person by an upset fan at a mall in England, after he obliged to his request for a photo.
Now this is disgraceful! Two years back you were celebrating and dancing on the roads because of them #ct17 and today you are treating them like this. You may comment on their performance and fitness but this is not the way! #CWC19 #PAKvSA #WeHaveWeWill pic.twitter.com/8Ney8VSlSU
— Faizan Najeeb Danawala (@danawalafaizan) June 21, 2019
After the video went viral on social media, fans and celebrities around the world, including those from India extended their support for the Pakistani captain.
The reaction from Pakistani sports fans was so extreme, the entire cricketing world, fought back against the tirade of horrible bullying. #IStandWithSarfaraz started trending across Pakistan for hours as Pakistanis, professional cricketers and celebrities defended the cricket team against the wave of abuse and harassment.
— Riteish Deshmukh (@Riteishd) June 22, 2019
"If I were #SarfarazAhmed I'd have broken the boy's phone and called his family over," @wasimakramlive shares with @faizanlakhani his disappointment at fans' abusive behaviour towards players during #WorldCup2019 pic.twitter.com/M3BBxNZEgi
— Geo Super (@geosupertv) June 22, 2019
You’re not gutsy you’re basically a nobody, a Troll!
In fact, you should thank #SarfarazAhmed for giving you the 2 minutes of fame with such grace.
No matter what they do at the game no one has any right to attack them like this.
Praying for you always & forever 🇵🇰❤️❤️#TeamGreen
— MAWRA HOCANE (@MawraHocane) June 23, 2019
Pakistan’s head coach Mickey Arthur felt the defeat strongly too, “just think the guys were burnt last week (after the India match). The guys were incredibly hurt by media, by public, by social media, and hopefully we got a proper reaction from them today that can just shut some people up for a little while,” said the disappointed head coach while talking to media.
Pakistan since has made a strong comeback, beating South Africa to keep their semi-final chances alive.”It happens so quick. You lose a game; you lose another game; it’s a World Cup,” said Mickey Arthur.
The deprecating humour Pakistanis take on often makes for great offhanded jokes from time to time, but when it reaches aggressive overtones, people who call themselves ‘fans’ need to check their behavior and the entitlement with which they hurl insults at other people.
Here’s to hoping the upcoming matches are enjoyable and drama free!
Congratulations Team Pakistan , Positive ,Attacking & Determination 😍 , what an innings by @iHarisSohail 😍😍😍 , Great Team Effort Ma Shaa Allah , Bowlers well done 👍🏼 Pakistan 🇵🇰 Zindabad
— Mohammad Hafeez (@MHafeez22) June 23, 2019
This victory is for the fans of Pakistan cricket who support the team through thick and thin. We are working hard and trying to improve with every match. Keep backing your country, we all are playing for Pakistan. #PakistanZindabad #WeHaveWeWill pic.twitter.com/sHIeCsixFy
— Shadab Khan (@76Shadabkhan) June 23, 2019