Former India wicketkeeper Farokh Engineer had triggered a storm across the cricketing circle last month with his comments for India’s national selectors and Anushka Sharma, wife of skipper Virat Kohli. Engineer had raised a number of eyebrows while slamming the current selection panel. The legendary wicketkeeper sensationally said that the selectors served tea to Anushka Sharma at the World Cup.

Not only that, Engineer, who played 46 Tests for India, also ridiculed the credentials of India’s five-member selection panel, led by MSK Prasad. The other members of the panel include Sarandeep Singh, Jatin Paranjpe, Gagan Khoda and Devang Gandhi. Engineer called the selection panel “Mickey Mouse selection committee” as he questioned the qualification of the selectors.

“We have got a Mickey Mouse selection committee. Virat Kohli has a major impact (in the process) which is very good. But how are the selectors qualified? Between them, have they played about 10-12 Test matches,” Engineer said.

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Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma
Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma (Credits: Twitter)

Virat Kohli replies:

Unsurprisingly, Farokh Engineer’s comment had drawn widespread criticism. Anushka Sharma had also taken to Twitter to post a strongly-worded message, slamming her critics. But amidst all these, Virat Kohli maintained his silence. Well, the India superstar finally broke his silence on the incident while saying that Anushka has always been a ‘soft target’.

Kohli made it clear that Anushka was nowhere near the selectors during the World Cup. He also said that the Bollywood actress’ name gets noticed because of how successful she is. The India batsman further opined that Anushka’s name gets dragged only to sensationalise stories.

“She came for one World Cup game against Sri Lanka and the family box and the selector box was different, and there was no selector in that box. She came with two friends. As I said, she is known, she’s been successful at a very high level so when people take her name, it gets noticed,” Kohli told India Today.

“You want to mention something about the selectors do that, but why join her name with it. When the lies are spoken so much all around, they start becoming truths. So you need to speak up at some stage and that’s exactly what happened recently.

“So much has been said about her and so much comes out about her. The value system that she has and her beliefs and the nature she has, it won’t allow her to go against rules and protocols. So I don’t know why people have wanted to sensationalise stories by taking her name because she’s a soft target. We both had been ignoring it for a while,” Kohli added.

Well, one just cannot deny the fact that Anushka has always been targeted by the fans and others. More often than not, she faces the heat whenever Kohli fails to deliver on the cricket field. And the trolling is nothing new. She has been facing it even before marrying Kohli. But she as well as Kohli rarely hit back at the critics or trolls.