April 18, 2024

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A now familiar scene got repeated at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai, as the IPL side’s skipper Hardik Pandya got booed by the crowd. Since he replaced Rohit Sharma as MI skipper after returning to his original franchise following two seasons at the helm of the Gujarat Titans (GT), Hardik Pandya has faced jeers and boos from a section of fans while also facing scrutiny from former India players.

Adding to his woes, the five-time IPL champions got off to the worst possible start this season, losing their lung-opener to GT and also going down in their second to the Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Video of Pandya getting booed went viral. England’s World Cup-winning skipper Eoin Morgan said on Jio Cinema: “I’ve never seen a home captain getting booed like that”.

After being booed by the fans in Hyderabad, the MI skipper didn’t receive a warm reception at the home ground, Wankhede Stadium, as fans continued the trend of booing the all-rounder.

Former India player turned cricket commentator Sanjay Manjrekar asked the Wankhede crowd to “behave” as fans booed Mumbai Indians (MI) skipper Hardik Pandya during the toss against Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 season on Monday.

When Manjrekar introduced Hardik as the MI skipper, the fans didn’t shy away from expressing themselves as they booed the 30-year-old.

While introducing the captains of both teams during the toss, Manjrekar asked the crowd to “behave” as they continued to boo the newly appointed MI skipper for the third consecutive game.

“With the two captains with me, Mumbai Indians captain Hardik Pandya, big round of applause, ladies and gentlemen. Behave!” Manjrekar said in a video posted by IPL on X.

Right at that moment, according to news agency PTI, Rohit, in his training kit, was meeting his former teammate Harbhajan Singh who was at the field as one of the commentators doing the pre-match show.

If they were not enough, Pandya again found himself at the receiving end of crowd’s displeasure, especially from the Sachin Tendulkar stand when he walked out to bat with his team reeling at 20/4 in the fourth over.

Additionally, as per officials here, the fans were allowed inside the stadium only after their banners were confiscated due to an election commission directive given to the Mumbai police.

However, there was an element of miscommunication as well as misinterpretation since the directive was about not allowing political banners but fans complained on social media about all banners being taken away.

There were, nevertheless, a few fans who were able to carry their banners inside.

With ANI and PTI inputs

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