Writing his own redemption tale with the ball, Afghanistan pacer Naveen-ul-Haq made headlines for all the right reasons on Wednesday. The Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) bowler earned plaudits for his bowling heroics in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 Eliminator against Rohit Sharma’s Mumbai Indians (MI) at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. Taking a cue from LSG skipper KL Rahul, pacer Naveen brought out a new celebration during the recently concluded encounter at the IPL 2023 playoffs.
Running rings around the MI batters, LSG pacer Naveen opened his account by taking the massive wicket of Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma in the fourth over. After removing Rohit for 11 off 10 balls, the LSG pacer dished out a Rahul-like celebration to spark a debate on social media. The LSG speedster then bagged the jackpot wicket of Suryakumar Yadav, who was eyeing a gritty half-century at the time.
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Emerging as the pick of the bowlers for Lucknow Super Giants, pace ace Naveen got the better of Cameron Green (41) as no MI batter managed to score a half-century in the Eliminator at Chepauk. As Naveen brought out Rahul’s trademark celebration after taking the crucial wickets against MI, the LSG star was called out by legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar during the match commentary on Jio Cinema.
“He has had issues with the crowd. You should not celebrate by chucking your ears. This is the time he has got a wicket. He has got to listen to the applause. When somebody scores a hundred also, don’t chuck your ears. Listen to the applause, chuck your hand behind the ears and say ‘hello, now can I hear you?’. That’s how the celebration should be. That’s old me saying this, by the way,” Gavaskar said. Gavaskar’s noteworthy remarks triggered outrage on Twitter.
Here’s how Twitterverse reacted after Gavaskar expressed his reservations about Naveen’s celebrations in Qualifier 1 at Chepauk.
Naveen, who had a war of words with Virar Kohli, picked up four wickets and leaked 38 runs for LSG. “I think they (Green and Surya) had a good partnership, and we needed a breakthrough at that point. They (LSG) were expecting those two wickets from me, and I delivered at the right time,” Naveen reflected on his bowling performance during the innings break. Though Naveen put up a show for LSG, the Lucknow-based franchise failed to outclass Mumbai Indians in the playoffs. Naveen’s bowling heroics went in vain as the KL Rahul-less side folded for 101 in 16.3 overs to lose the match by 81 runs.