Where do we as cricket fans and critics draw the line?

Being a fan is good but commenting on a cricketer’s personal life is a big no-no!

A renowned journalist recently tweeted about how the immensely talented Jemimah Rodrigues should focus more on her game rather than posting on Instagram. The journalist also insinuated that Jemimah should strive to be better on the field rather than on social media.

Jemimah is well-known and quite popular among her followers for her social media activities. She is a regular user of social media to exhibit her interests and passions like singing and dancing among the many other talents she possesses and has won the admiration of people both inside and outside of India. The journalist also took potshots after some fans called him out for his poor comments as he tweeted again with a similar vein of thoughts as to how it is better for cricketers to focus on the main job of performing on the field than posting content of dancing on social media for more followers which again goes to show how ridiculous and regressive his thinking is.

These comments were distasteful and raise the question of whether critics should pass comments on the personal lives of cricketers and where we draw the line between the personal and the professional.

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Jemimah Rodrigues. PC: Getty Images
Jemimah Rodrigues. PC: Getty Images

 

Jemimah Rodrigues has been having a rough patch for some games unable to score the big runs. In the 4th T20I specifically where India lost by a minuscule margin of 7 runs, Jemimah was dismissed for 8 off 11 which raised many eyebrows about her approach to the run-chase. It is often the barest of margins and the smallest of errors that can cost the game and many seem to be indicating how Jemimah has not been contributing enough to the team’s cause in the recent past. It is rather unfortunate how one bad series and people forget the good performances that a player has put in.

Sometimes they fail to take into account the work that goes behind the scenes and how much hard work cricketers put in day in and day out which on a bad day does not translate into big performances which is absolutely fine. Not too long ago, Jemimah wowed everyone with her stellar performance in the Commonwealth Games and the preceding series and backing a player when they are down is imperative. Being a sportsperson also means riding the lows as much as celebrating the highs and as fans, we need to acknowledge that our cricketers are human and that they need support and love in all stages.

As a fan perhaps, it is imperative that we respect the boundaries of our cricketers and not unnecessarily comment on their personal lives or what they do off the field or on social media as they do not owe us anything. Constructive criticism is ideally the way one should look at things rather than making shallow and unacceptable comments that serve no purpose whatsoever. If there are technical issues or any other noticeable problems related to the game, bring them to the fore and give suggestions on how they can be rectified. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but not at the cost of belittling someone and the young Jemimah needs our support and backing, not unacceptable and unhelpful comments.

I am a first year postgraduate student pursuing a MA in Media and Communication Studies at Christ University, Bengaluru. I am a podcaster, blogger and an avid cricket fan. When not glued to cricket matches, you can find me submerged in books and thinking about cricket all the time.

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